Thursday, November 6, 2008

Misadventures at the White House

Seriously photoshopped. I had to because the light was far from perfect yesterday.

A few years ago, along with some of my Powerful Wiccan Practitioner Friends, I launched into a bout of magic with the White House. Why? Can't speak for the motivations of my friends, but for me at least it was because the White House really bugged me.

There was a long period of time when I avoided that area of town like the plague, even though the Corcoran and the Renfrew - great art museums - are right around the corner. During that time, finding myself anywhere near the WH always put me in a foul mood. If I was driving, every street seemed to lead away from where I wanted to go. Of course there was never a place to park. On foot, it was hardly better because the WH was (and is) so barricaded, so blocked off from the public, so tucked away, it makes all navigation around it overly complicated. Trying to get from point A to point B in that neighborhood always meant a lengthy detour that involved plowing through mobs of tourists. Oh. I hated that place.

So, the same blind hubris that convinced me to take on Civil War battlefields lead me to believe the White House "needed" me to interfere with my magic. For heaven's sake, what was I thinking?

I remember the day when my great teacher, colleague and friend Kila held her cell phone up to the fence in front of the WH while her husband (who was at the FDR memorial) read aloud some of the powerful quotes engraved in the pink granite of the FDR. Broadcasting FDR's words at the White House was a wonderful ritual.

Not as pleasant is the memory of walking all the way around the periphery in a serious downpour, counting the steps as I went. Now I can't even remember the point of that exercise. Oh well. At the time it seemed Very Important.

During that era, I was coincidentally invited to take a small, private evening tour of the WH. All I could think, after that experience, was that I've never set foot in an uglier or more haunted place. I was struck by how small it is - seems like it should be gigantic, but it's not. The other interesting thing about that tour was that, afterwards, my loathing for the place dissolved completely. In fact, I subsequently developed an affection for the house that remains to this day. Go figure.

The pic above is the view of the front of our first national residence, which is obviously a southern plantation house. Unfortunate design idea, wasn't it? I think so. The north side used to be the back door until FDR was president. They switched it around to accommodate his disability, a good idea, though it really messed with the feng shui of the place. Now the front door faces Lafayette Park, once the largest slave market in the city.

I wonder how the energy of this strange place will change when the Obamas move in? A black family in the White House? Wow. I can't wait!


Anonymous said...

Right after Obama was declared the winner, CNN showed a view of the White House with people out celebrating in front. All I could think was "The People have taken back the White House." Hoping for some healing.....


Angela said...

Once you get to know a thing or place, it loses all its awe, doesn`t it? No more fear necessary. And it all depends who lives in a house. Good vibrations will spread out and soon it will twinkle at you!
And actually I don`t think it`s small. I like it.

cuff said...

You're asking for trouble messing with the Mason's magic...they're liable to dispatch a Knights Templar strike team to Capitol Hill...

I used to love how you could drive right in front of the place until they shut down Pennsylvania Avenue during the Clinton Administration. And I remember visiting in 1987 on a high school trip and seeing that woman across the street who 20 years later is still across the street (unless something happened to her in the last three months).

Reya Mellicker said...

Nope, she's still there. And yes Cuff you are so right about the Masonic magic. Kicked my ass.

For instance, after we cast a triangle of stillness in Lafayette Park one day, I came home to find a letter from the IRS, informing me that I owed them $2,000. Ouch!

Steve said...

What woman across the street?

Reya, you're lucky you weren't arrested walking the perimeter of the White House. I'm sure the cameras were watching!

willow said...

I was there not too long ago and was also disappointed that you can no longer drive by the front. Sad.

Fascinating how your feelings changed once you got a feel of the place.

Yes, can't wait for the Obamas to move in! Exciting times.

cuff said...

Steve, there's a woman -- and I think sometimes a man -- who's been protesting nuclear arms for at least twenty years. She has a small lean-to shelter and has outlasted three Presidents, soon to be four.