Monday, September 13, 2010

Almost heaven

It's a little bit of a sad realization after only a month living here, but D.C.? A little pretentious.

At least it is in comparison to little Frederick, Maryland, where I went with friends this weekend in honor of their annual "In the street" festival.

Frederick - like many other small towns in this neck of the woods - is the kind of place where you expect townsfolk to dress up like Civil War* soldiers and fight mock battles in their spare time. As a matter of fact, the Battle of Monocacy Junction** was fought just outside of town, and Frederick is on the Civil War Trail - meaning busloads of elderly tourists in matching T-shirts roll through to visit all the numerous war museums and historic markers.

Sounds like a pretty frumpy crowd, but luckily just as we arrived the early-bird-special set was already getting back on the bus to go back to their hotel, and the rowdy locals had taken over. It was clear to us that they had been in the street since breakfast.

Something about the Frederickians put me at ease. It wasn't just the lower ratio of government-issue ID cards - who other than a cop has an ID card in a place like Frederick? It had something to do with the fact that when the band played "Country Roads" the entire bar burst into song. And maybe the preponderance of very, very good local breweries that hold their own Oktoberfest every year.

Guess I just have a little hillbilly in my blood, but I think I'll be back in Frederick sometime soon - corn maze, anyone? Pumpkin patch? Oktoberfest?

* Or the War of Northern Aggression, if you're Southern
**For the record, the Confederates won