As summer creeps closer and temperatures climb, so does the desire to spend time outside. You can still walk by the river (so long as you stay 6 feet away from people you don’t live with, of course), but the patios where drinkers and diners kick back are closed. In some cases, caution tape makes the closures extra stark.
Indoors, businesses’ lights remain off and chairs are stacked in ordered rows, not spread around tables waiting for guests to occupy them. Plants, unattended since the stay-at-home order took place in late March, wither. Mannequins are the only bodies found in stores.
City Paper staff photographer Darrow Montgomery set out on foot to capture what D.C. looks like after two months of suspended activity. Dark, empty storefronts are today’s new normal, but bits of what might still be here when the pandemic fog lifts can be found if you look hard enough. The sun will still rise tomorrow and catch a glimmer of gold on a curtain tassel or shine on the face of a wax president stoically watching the street. —Caroline Jones