Back in B’more

Had a little time to myself so I decided to head to the east coast and have some much-needed time with great friends. ❤

Last year, I visited Baltimore for the first time and I fell in love with it. It may have been the fact that the whole weekend I was surrounded by some of my favorite people and that the weather was amazing, but I quickly made a note to return sometime soon.

◊ Nando’s
Naturally, the first thing I have to write about is going back to Nando’s. If you have read any of my posts about London, you will know that I absolutely love this restaurant. I cannot tell you what is so good about it, but everyone that I have taken has loved it too. Weirdly, there are several locations throughout the DMV (D.C., Maryland, Virginia) area, so of course I take advantage of this. It does taste different than the U.K. Nando’s–notably their garlic bread–but that will never stop me.
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◊ Faidley’s Seafood
My mission this time in Baltimore was to get some crab. I had to take a screen grab from a video, but Faidley’s Seafood is a market well-known for their lump crab cakes. It is located within the historic Lexington Market and you cannot miss it because the word “crab” is written everywhere. I opted for the lump crab cake sandwich and while I initially enjoyed it, I think they used mayonnaise in the crab to bind it or on the bread which is one of my most hated tastes. It is also fairly expensive at around $16, but it is filling and good for lunch. Unfortunately, I will not be having that again, but maybe I will just get crab legs next time.
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◊ Mosaic District
After Jane finished classes on Friday, we set out on a short road trip to Reston, Virginia to see our middle/high school friend, Megan. When we got there, it was around dinner time so Megan drove us to the Mosaic District which is a cute shopping and residential area outside of Reston. We stopped for ramen at JINYA Ramen Bar, but the wait was an hour long, so what did I suggest while we wait? Ice cream, of course.
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We went to 520 Ice Cream and Tea Mosaic which is a rolled ice cream shop. I have never heard of rolled ice cream before, but from what I could see, they basically put the liquid ice cream onto a (presumably) freezing surface that hardens it enough that the ice cream can be rolled into spirals. It reminded me of tamales when he picked up the ice cream rolls with tongs. You can add toppings to be mixed in or just put it on the top at the end at no additional cost. I thought it was delicious and as luck would have it, the second we finished it, we got the notification that our table was ready at JINYA.
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We spent the rest of the night chilling out and having a girls night. Jane and Megan both have dogs, but were also coincidentally dog-sitting for other dogs, so we had four pups to show us unconditional love, a.k.a. the best feeling in the world.

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◊ Inner Harbor
We headed back to Baltimore on Saturday morning where we expected thunderstorms, but it turned out to just be overcast. We decided to walk over to Inner Harbor and grab some lunch and then walk along the water until something caught our eye. For a small combined fee of $20, we ended up doing something that makes me inherently uneasy due to some past trauma which is paddle boating. Paddle boating itself doesn’t make me uneasy, but putting myself on a large body of water and left to my own control does.
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We did have life jackets and there were so many little kids that I felt a little easier about it, so I decided why not. The $20 covers half an hour, but with the limited exploration space, it felt just long enough. The paddle boats hold four adults so if you were to go with four people, that’s only $5 per person. I thought that was a great deal!

◊ Samsung x Baltimore
There was a pop-up for the new Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9+. We joined the line to do the virtual reality experience which made us feel like we were on a ride. It was really fun! We then played around with the new phones and honestly… I was convinced to switch over to Samsung. That camera is next level. We will see what I actually end up doing when I get a new phone though.
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◊ Mount Vernon
I ended the trip by spending probably five minutes in Mount Vernon near the original George Washington statue. I don’t care at all about George Washington, but the area was BEAUTIFUL. I wish I was able to explore it more, but naturally the sun finally came out on my way to the airport so I am sure I saw it in its best form!
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♦ Transportation and Lodging:
This was another one of those trips where I fortunately had someone to stay with and to drive me around. I am always very gracious toward my friends and their hospitality. Just for reference though, I stayed in the Mount Vernon/downtown area in Baltimore.

♦ Total costs:
Lyft: $54 (including the trip from the airport)
ALL (excluding costs of food and drinks): $20

So obviously from the totals above, we did not do many activities that required payment which is always my favorite type of vacation. It was another one of those places that you can walk around and enjoy the attractions, especially when the weather is great. I lucked out that Jane was centrally located so we could walk to many things, but when I visited last time, I did feel you needed a car to get around the city.

This was the perfect way to get back into the swing of traveling. Though I love going on trips to new places, there is something especially relaxing about just going to familiar places and spending time with great company. Until next time!!
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xx, AE

As always, please make sure you are following me on Snapchat (@alexasdrawde) and Instagram (on the sidebar) to see what is happening live on my trips!!

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