Needless to say, it’s been a while. My first few weeks here were stupid busy and, obviously, I kind of missed a few weekly blog posts. But I did still keep up with my daily Instagram posts, so there’s that!
My friends Janee and Sarah came to visit me the last weekend of March/beginning of April. We hung out in Baltimore for two nights, and explored some areas of town I had yet to venture out to — Fells Point, Inner Harbor and the National Aquarium, and Canton. We had planned to go to Philadelphia for a day, but the person we had booked our housing with turned out to most likely be a scam, so we just decided to stay in Baltimore for the day instead. I think this worked out best for us, as driving to Philadelphia would have ended up with too much time driving and not enough time actually exploring.
Click through for photos and more about Janee and Sarah’s visit to Baltimore, as well as my birthday trip to Rhode Island!
Then, Saturday, we drove out to D.C. Luckily the Smithsonian museums were open late, and we were able to check out both the National Air and Space Museum, where we were able to see the ORIGINAL 1903 Wright flyer, aka, the very first airplane to ever exist, and I became obsessed with Amelia Earhart. We also got the chance to go to the Smithsonian Natural History Museum which was a lot of fun! By the time we finished, we walked around the block to the White House at night, and tried to find somewhere to eat. We messed up not making reservations in a tourist area on a Saturday night in D. C., but we managed to find some seats at the bar at the Hamilton and ended up having a great dinner. We went out in D.C. and managed to meet someone who was getting married in San Antonio in just a few days — what are the chances of that?!
The next morning, before dropping Janee and Sarah off at the airport, we drove back down to the National Mall and went to see the Lincoln Memorial, Reflecting Pool, and Vietnam War Memorial. It was quite a whirlwind 24 hours in D.C., but we felt like we hit up everything we wanted to!
After they left, I worked for about a week, maybe did some school stuff, and before I knew it — it was time for my birthday trip to Rhode Island! My friend Danielle’s husband is in the Coast Guard and they have been living in RI for a few years now. I decided to hop on up (on a 1 hour flight) for a quick weekend trip to explore New England, a region of the country I haven’t been to since a family vacation to Boston 10 years ago, and Rhode Island itself, a state I can now check off my bucket list!
The weekend was fun and relaxing, just what I wanted to ring in my 26th year. We went to a nice dinner my first night there, where I ordered a lobster bigger than me stuffed with shrimp the size of the palm of my hand. That Saturday, we went exploring to Fort Adams, Newport, gawked at all the fabulous mansions, and ended up exploring around Beavertail Lighthouse. Sunday was my actual birthday, and I celebrated with breakfast at home with mimosas in a tiki cup, then exploring around Providence while waiting for my late flight out. It was a great weekend and I almost want to take an assignment up in New England for work!
I came back and worked, and am now on the last day of a 3-day stretch off before I go back for four in a row tomorrow. A couple days ago my manager called me on my day off, always cause for concern. But then I called her back and she actually asked if I was considering extending here!
I had been playing with the idea in my head to extend already, and after talking about it with Aaron and going over the logistics of it all, I decided to go for it. I have not yet extended at any of my assignments, so I am a little nervous about being in one place for longer than 13 weeks! But the only other place I wanted to go was Seattle, and it seemed as if that may not work out. I still haven’t sent in my Washington license application, which can take up to 6 weeks to process, there are limited jobs out there in Seattle right now, and the jobs that are out there are extremely low paying.
I find that travel nurses travel for two reasons — one, to travel and see the country on working vacations, and two, to make as much money as possible to get out of debt. Although I am doing this to travel and not make money, I still need to not just break even simply by going somewhere I want to go. So, while I took a low-paying assignment when I went to Austin, it worked out because I was close to home, and saving on housing while I stayed with a friend. However, taking a low-paying contract in a high cost of living location like Seattle would definitely not work out in my favor.
Also, to be honest, I’m kind of tired of getting up and moving and all the other nonsense that comes with starting a new contract. Unfortunately, my housing won’t be available to me after June, so I’ll have to move anyway… but moving from Mount Vernon to Canton is much easier than moving from Maryland, to Texas, all the way to Washington! And I will, obviously, be at the same hospital, so I already know how things work and don’t need to hit the ground running again.
So I’m in week 6 of my contract, almost halfway through, but with this extension I will be in Baltimore until mid-September! I’m actually excited as I really enjoy this city, and feel as though there’s so much to do in the immediate area I haven’t done yet. As a Texas girl, I’m still amazed that in the same time it takes to drive from San Antonio to Dallas, I can drive all the way up to Rhode Island. There’s tons of stuff even within a day trip I would love to check out this summer — Delaware with Dogfish Head Brewery and their beaches, Philadelphia, more time in D.C., maybe even a trip up to New Jersey and Atlantic City! I actually have time now! And, since I’ll be here in the summer, it means more time for O’s games as well!
Aaron will actually be coming in on Sunday for a week to visit, and I absolutely cannot wait to show him around. We are going to an Orioles game at Camden Yards and then taking the train down to D.C. for a day as well. Hopefully I won’t be a slacker with my blog anymore and will have photos and stuff from his trip up sooner rather than later!