May Your Fourth of July be Lit and Your Metro Not Be

I had the amazing opportunity to go see Kent Walker, the Vice President of Google speak about policy. The day of the event is kind of a funny story, though! Aundrea and I are always good at getting to events, and to the office, way before anything starts. We pride ourselves on being early to everything we do. Unfortunately, the D.C. Metro does not respect our desire to be ahead of schedule. Thursday, the day of the event, was a particularly bad day. On our way the event, the metro stopped between two stations, meaning we were stuck in a concrete tunnel. We had to wait for the train in front of ours to move in order for our train to pull up to the station. Apparently, the train in front of ours was shut down because someone was blocking up the doors. Aundrea and I were quite irritated.

Once we got to our stop, we rushed off as quickly as we could At this point, we would have been at least 10 minutes early. As we were walking up the escalator, Aundrea made the realization that she left her black, unmarked bag with a pair of shoes in the metro. She began to panic because she thought this would led to the Great Metro Shutdown of 2017. She was worried because she didn’t want the metro police to think it was something threatening. Luckily, we were able to speak to a metro attendant. He was able to locate the bag and send it to lost and found. That was the perfect way to end an already stressful morning. 

Despite the crazy adventure, we were able to get to the event. We were ten minutes late—but no one is counting. The Google event was held at The Heritage Foundation, which is a conservative think tank. The elevators had a quote about individual liberties, how conservative. Aundrea loved it. The building was beautiful and had a lot of history behind it.

Kent Walker was brought into speak about internet privacy. While I have been focusing a lot on broadband and infrastructure, it was nice to hear about the concerns as we are moving towards a more globalized world.

His talk made me think about national security issues that I would have never thought of otherwise. For instance, if a criminal is a British citizen, but his data is stored in Finland, who is the authority responsible for releasing information? These are the questions that need to be answered, and not one government entity has found the solution. Google plays a key role in this discussion due to their presence on the internet. I look forward to seeing what direction the executive and legislative branches take.

The biggest thing I learned this week was you can never trust the metro system. In some cases, you might have to leave an hour early in order to get where you need to go. Not only did the metro pause because of a mishap on Thursday, the Metro was also closed Friday because there was a fire on the track. They had to get everybody off of the train. Aundrea and I had to take an Uber to get to work and we were a half an hour late. Lucky for us, our bosses are super understanding.

This week was filled with many memorable times. I had the opportunity to go to a dinner at past alumni of Capital Scholar’s house (thanks, Matt!). Not only was the home cooked food AMAZING but they had the most amazing dog named Rocket. Lucky for me, Rocket loved to play tug-of-war. Also, Matt’s house had a bunch of beautiful house plants! Gardening has recently become a hobby of mine in the last year so I was thrilled to meet a fellow green thumb.

On Saturday, a few Capital Scholars went to the Native American Museum. The museum was beautiful. One interesting fact, there are no corners in the museum because Native Americans believe that corners are where bad spirits lurk. On Sunday, I spent most of my day getting stuff ready for Aundrea’s birthday. I was in charge of getting decorations! After that, I had a picnic in Georgetown with a couple of my friends from ASU. We went to the grocery store and got different types of food to snack on. We sat by the water talking about boys and politics.

Once I got home from the picnic we went to a free show at the Kennedy Center. It was an event called UniverSoul Circus. The venue alone is gorgeous but the show was so fun to see! It was a circus atmosphere featuring different stunts and dance moves. What was most interesting about the act was that it featured all minority dancers from various countries. It was a blast to see.

I am looking forward to spending Fourth of July in the nation’s capital! My significant other is coming to town and I am looking forward to showing him around town. We are planning on going to the Holocaust Museum, Ford’s Theater, and many other locations. I know the next week is going to be great. I hope your Fourth of July is lit (get it?)!

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