When I moved to Washington to harass airlines for Ralph Nader, my first home was in Adams Morgan in what is now the Valley Vista condominium. Back then,it was a building with rent controlled apartments that even I could afford on a non-profit salary. As with much of the rental housing in the neighborhood, it went condo.
My 1-bedroom apartment was gigantic compared to my New York City brownstone - I had 835 square feet of space, compared to about 300 in New York. In Washington, I also got an amazing top-floor view of Rock Creek Park and the National Cathedral.
And while I no longer live in Adams Morgan, I do go there often - and not just to show houses and condominiums. The neighborhood has my favorite restaurants and grocery stores.
Every time there is an uprising in a far corner of the world, some of the affected people immigrate to DC and open a fabulous restaurant. Then there are places like Millie and Al's, a pizza and beer place that was a hang out for the kids who worked in various Democratic administrations. Somehow, I think the kids in the Bush administration have opted for something a little less seedy. Millie and Al are probably rooting for Obama so the crowds will return.
There are the funky little book stores, gift and clothing shops. You can find high end bicycles, political buttons, little Washington Monuments and White houses in glass with snow, incense, all kinds of T-shirts, and exotic home decor.
September 14th is a great day to visit Adams Morgan - it's the day of the annual neighborhood festival where they block off two blocks for a street fair with great food, music and crafts.