Sundays With Strangers

genMid.DC9693043_0This Cleveland Park house is truly one of a kind in a city that pretty much only has, let’s be honest, two or three types of houses.  It dates from 1903 and is a Shingle-style home, which I didn’t even know was a thing, to the point that when the agent dispensed this piece of information, I had to ask her to repeat it like three times (“What is she saying? Is she saying ‘jingle’?” I panic-thought to myself), until she got that tight flat-lipped smile on her face that people get when they’re mentally backtracking through their life to figure out where, exactly, they went wrong.  (About halfway through your second year of college is my guess.)

Yeah, so it’s a Shingle-style home.  It’s a style that was originally seen in seaside cottages of the super-wealthy, right around the turn of the 20th century, and I could definitely imagine some Mark Twain-looking tycoon in a white linen suit strolling out onto this porch, lighting a pipe, and starting to drone on about “manifest destiny” or something stupid like that.  (God, I’m glad I wasn’t born in pre-internet times.)  Also – builders used to dip the shingles of Shingle-style houses in buttermilk before installing them, to give them an aged look.  So it’s definitely possible your roof still smells vaguely like the inside of your running shoes after you wear them for several hours on a humid day.

Inside, the house is rustic and charming, like a hilarious uncle who has one of those mustaches that curls up at the ends.  The living room has an antique wood-burning fireplace, and a whole lot of built-ins, so start buying “Gone with the Wind” collectible plates off of Ebay.  The family room has a staggering number of windows and great views of the woods;  if you like “woodsy views,” then you need this house.  The kitchen is huge, with long marble counters on three of four sides, stainless steel appliances, and an oversized island in the middle.  There’s also a formal dining room, for those mid-afternoon holiday dinners where everyone is being passive-aggressive and your digestion is wrecked because who eats a banquet at this weird inbetween hour?  Speaking of dining, there’s a large screened-in porch that’s perfect for al fresco dining, or al fresco drinking scotch late at night while gazing into the woods and thinking about faking your own death.  There’s also an expansive wooden deck with great views of the wooded creek, and lots of privacy, wink wink.  (Insert your own pot plants or deck chair sex joke here.)

Upstairs, the master bedroom is filled with light and has uber-high vaulted ceilings, so if you’re lying there in the dark late and night and hear a rustling noise, don’t worry, it’s probably just bats roosting directly above you.  (Vampire bats.)  The master bath features twin basins and a soaking tub as big as a horse trough.  There’s a charming office with a row of small skylights in case you ever want to “work” from home (you know *exactly* what those quotation marks mean), and the very top level is an awesome attic bedroom with tons of windows and a fantastic windowseat in which your teenager (teenagers always take the attic bedroom) will recline while taking extremely inappropriate selfies which they will then upload to the internet for everyone to see, including future employers and your entire extended family.  There’s a garage, and the house features original pine floors throughout and geo-thermal central air.  I’m not sure what geo-thermal central air is, but it sounds vaguely environmentally responsible.  In the dystopian future, when your entire family lives in a homemade canoe, paddling endlessly around the underwater ruins of the US in search of precious canned goods to salvage, and your kid gives you a recriminating look, you can be like, “hey, our house had geo-thermal central air, I did my part!  None of this is my fault!”  (Hopefully they’re too young to remember your Hummer phase.)

3030 Macomb Street NW
5 Bedrooms, 4 Baths

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