If you follow me on Instagram, you may have noticed that I was in D.C. this weekend and had a bit of a lucky day on Friday on Capitol Hill. I’ll be back soon to share more about the conference I attended and some of my D.C. faves, but today it’s all about super(s)heros — real and fictional.
I was in D.C. for the American Medical Association Medical Student Advocacy Conference (MARC). I made new friends from medical schools around the country, learned about important issues facing patients and healthcare providers, and met with Members of Congress and their staff to discuss pharmaceutical drug pricing, graduate medical education, and gun violence prevention.
While I was on Capitol Hill, I met my representative, Congresswoman Donna Shalala. Not only does she represent my neighborhood in Miami, but she is a former Secretary of Health and Human Services and spent 14 years as the President of the University of Miami. Her accomplishments could fill multiple books. She was so warm and gracious during our interaction and I am grateful that she is in D.C. to represent my interests as part of FL-27.
Thanks to my summer as a Congressional intern and my years working in D.C., I know my way around the Capitol buildings pretty well. I was the tour guide for my little group of medical students and after the meeting with Rep. Shalala, we walked over to Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s office. As we were finishing up our contributions to the incredible wall of post-it notes from supporters outside her office, we heard the “click-clack” of heels coming down the hall. We all turned around and IT WAS AOC. I introduced our group, fangirled a little, and then asked for a picture. It was really surreal — and she’s also my age, which is bonkers to think about…what an incredible human to have in Congress.
After a few more meetings and many miles logged walking back and forth from the House side to the Senate side, some friends and I took a quick break in one of the cafeterias before our last meeting. As we were walking from the cafeteria to the meeting, I noticed a familiar face walking towards us in the hallway. And you guys, IT WAS CHRIS EVANS aka CAPTAIN AMERICA! I already knew he was on the Hill, but I didn’t even comprehend that I might see him. As we got closer to walking past him I said, “Hi Chris, could I grab a picture?”. I kid you not, I called him Chris. He was so kind — I felt a tiny bit bad afterwards because I obviously alerted a whole hallway of people to the fact that a perfect specimen of a human was in our midst. He was on the Hill to talk about a variety of issues and work on a civic engagement project.
In my five years living in D.C., I did have the opportunity to meet George Clooney (he was arrested for civil disobedience one time with my old boss) and see President Obama speak more than once, but this was on a different level. Perhaps because it all happened in one day and it was all totally unexpected. Whatever good mojo was in the air on Friday, I certainly capitalized (lol capital/Capitol puns) on it.