Cafe Ole is a small mediterranean bistro on Wisconsin Avenue, about half way between the Tenleytown Metro stop and the National Cathedral. It’s a small place. I got a few coupons in the mail so went there for lunch on my work-at-home day.
I think the best things on the menu are the kilic sis (grilled fish over rice) and the polenta tartufo with truffle oil. The fatoosh salad has an interesting dressing, but I am disappointed by any salad that has as its base ingredient greens romaine and iceberg lettuce. Cafe Ole serves food that is tasty and nutritious, but try as I may, I don’t crave it. Kilic sic is the bottom left dish.
Next door, is Fannie Mae. It looks like a palace. The upkeep of this “palace” is where some of your mortgage money goes to. Some other money goes to Fannie Mae’s executives’ bonuses. I don’t know where the rest goes. But Motley Fools says that Fannie Mae’s holding is $1 trillion plus in asset. Many believe that there is no company that has more powerful lobbying power in Washington.
A few hundred yards down is Sidewell Friends School, a prep school that rich people send their kids to. Lower school’s annual tuition is $26,790; middle and upper school’s annual tuition is $27,790. The school’s website says that in 2007-2008, the school gave out $4,300,000 in financial aid. Chelsea Clinton went there.
About 20 blocks uptown is a DC’s public high school, where “poor” people send their kids. Public high schools in DC are notoriously bad. I will get a picture to show you what a school is like. There’s garbage everywhere. Kids are loud and undisciplined. Doors are half broken.
Higher income people who live in DC can afford to send their kids to private schools, so it doesn’t concern them the state of public education in the “District”. Middle income people who can’t afford a private school education for their kids move out of DC into the suburbs where the schools are quite good and rents are cheaper. But, suburaban sprawling has created its own set of problems, like massive traffic jams. Everyone else left in DC (mostly low income people) has to deal with DC public schools. To live comfortably in DC with school age kids who go to private schools, you’ll need a gross household income of about half-million dollars a year.
DC has many charms to offer, and is a good city to live in. But the fact that this living environment is not one that is accesible to everyone, or even, to most people, makes the city less appealing to me in important ways.