Sundays With Strangers


I should’ve figured this would be an impressive one – any house on a street with “cathedral” in the name is bound to be nice.  (Same for any street named after anything golf-related, obscure geographical terms, e.g. palisades, archipelago, terraces, or anything vaguely British, e.g. manor, estate, Windsor, Westminster.)  There are also street names that guarantee a house will be crap, but I can’t tell you those, because if I did, strangers would sue me.

This gorgeous Beaux Arts home is in Woodley Park, so you’ll be close to the zoo, the National Cathedral, and lots of other things that sound impressive but that you’ll never ever EVER go to even if you ingested a magical substance that enabled you to live forever.  The front of this house features a wide wraparound porch that’s also partially shaded by an extremely lush front yard, so if you’re sitting on the porch swing and an annoying neighbor walks by, you could duck down and probably avoid them.  Inside, the foyer leads to a sprawling ground level with an open floor plan;  the living room is centered around a beautiful fireplace and boasts nine-and-a-half foot ceilings.  When you have guests over you should be like, “wow, aren’t these ceilings high?”  Then when they answer, “uh, yeah, I guess?”, grab them by the back of the neck, drag them into the family room and be like, “well, these ceilings are twelve feet tall, so it looks like you spoke too soon, IDIOT!”  Then go back to the living room like nothing happened.

There’s a beautiful formal dining room with wonderful natural light and a French palace-type chandelier;  the aforementioned family room has an entire wall of windows, as well as high ceilings and three (!) sets of French doors.  The kitchen has a sort of rustic farmhouse vibe, thanks to the white slatted cabinetry, which I’m into:  “modern” kitchens have a dampening effect on my appetite, since I feel like I should be eating a flavorless nutrient solution or something.  There are also stainless steel appliances and a wet bar, so, you know, it’s not literally rustic, just aesthetically rustic.  Adjacent to the kitchen is a pantry, which is where you’ll either have furtive sex with a Christmas party guest, or find that escaped murderer you heard about on the radio, depending on what kind of movie you live in.  Upstairs, the master bedroom suite is so large that it’s nearly loft-like, and the generous master bath is similarly proportioned, with stage-quality lighting that will show your smallest physical flaws in such brutal detail that you’ll feel an overwhelming urge to inject moisturizer directly into your face every time you duck in to wash your hands.  There are more bedrooms on the top level, one of which features a private balcony with spectacular views;  this is definitely the prize of the house.  Well, aside from the SAFE ROOM.

Ohhhhhhh yes.  This house has a SAFE ROOM, complete with a generator and a separate ventilation system.  I mean, I’m a paranoid – I recently found a tiny lint ball on my sheets, and my first thought was that it was definitely a Lyme disease tick – but this safe room (“SAFE ROOM”) totally puzzled me.  What is it meant to keep you safe from?  Home invaders?  Gas attack?  Volcano eruption?  The end of the world?  All of the above?  I’m not even against having a safe room, it’s just that once you have it, it seems like it would be tempting to sleep in there (what if the home invaders launch their gas attack at night?) and then once you experience the utter security of sleeping in your safe room, it’s only a short distance to full-on Howard Hughes-style seclusion, where you’re just staying in there for days on end.  There’s a fine line between a safe room and a crazy room, is what I’m saying.  That being said, I’m definitely going to build one if I ever win the lottery.

The exterior spaces of the house feature a massive wooden deck, and the biggest flagstone patio I’ve ever seen.  There must have been a shortage of flagstones for years after they built this patio.  Just keep in mind that if you end up living here, your house is going to be the default site for any holiday celebration that involves “grilling out.”  That means people are going to be setting off firecrackers in your yard, throwing empties onto your roof, and drunkenly peeing in your pantry because they thought it was the bathroom.  I would seriously consider covering the patio over with sod.

3100 Cathedral Avenue NW
5 Bedrooms, 4 Baths

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