What You Should Know about People in D.C.

Posted on Thursday, Jul 14, 2016

Have you ever been ignored by over 100 people in a row? It’s a very traumatizing experience. Especially if you are a bubbly person like myself.

My first couple of days here were a complete culture shock. It could have been because of the insanely friendly campus that I was accustomed to at Texas A&M (WHOOP 2016 WHOOP), or maybe D.C. is just full of mean, cold-hearted people that all hate me, but let me tell you, my soul and self-esteem were CRUSHED those first couple of days here.  I was so used to smiling and saying hello to everyone that crossed my path, and receiving (at the very least) a friendly nod back, or a nice friendly “Howdy”.  Instead, my first walk to work was a lonely one, filled with people who never even looked up, and if they did they did not reciprocate my enthusiasm for the day. However, throughout my months here I have come to realize something very important, people here aren’t mean, they’re just focused. I consider myself to be an avid people watcher, and here are some things that I have noticed.

People in DC always have somewhere to be.
People here are always heading somewhere. Work, meetings, and cups of coffee run this city. Everyone I see is coming from something, and is constantly rushing toward somewhere else they need to be soon.

People in DC always have something important on their minds.
Whether it’s a meeting, a work assignment, buying groceries or fitting in a workout people here always have something very important on their minds. They walk with a purpose, and focus on what they need to focus on.

People in DC are always busy.
People that are walking to work, sitting on the metro or even having a cup of coffee, are never just doing that. They are on the phone planning a meeting as they walk across the street, reading a memo on their phones as they have their morning coffee or they are reading a proposal while they sit (or stand) in the metro.

What do you think?

Ruby Luevanos-Clemente
Department of Education - Office of English Language Acquisition
Washington, D.C.