I have not actually met Alex in person. Who is he? The new Event Coordinator at Downtown Washington Inc.! He sent me a Facebook message on Re-Discover Washington three weeks ago, saying that him and his fiancé are moving to “the wonderful city of Washington.” He was looking for a creative job in town and I am so happy he found it! Alex is a marketing professional and graphic designer, and I believe he will be a great addition to the awesome Downtown team! So, before we all get to meet him, here is an exclusive interview he did for Re-Discover Washington!
The Name: Don’t be deceived by the “D”, HO-SHY-N is the correct pronunciation. The name was passed down from my grandfather who was originally from Armenia. His name was also Alex Hodschayan. He and my grandmother met in Germany just after World War II. They had a baby and when they became pregnant with the second, the two decided to move their family to the United States. Most of my family’s background is rooted in German culture and I am excited to be moving to an area where German roots are all around.
The Morning: Every morning is a little different, but they all have the same series of events. I typically wake up early and help my fiance, Dawn Sherrill, get our family ready in the morning. First I walk downstairs and let our two pups outside. We are the proud parents of a Bloodhound and a Chiweenie and wouldn’t trade them for the world. Once the pups are outside, I try to get some breakfast together for Dawn and myself. We eat together while looking out into our backyard and watching our dogs enjoy the early morning. Then it is back upstairs to shower and get ready for the day.
The Coffee: I love coffee, and prefer it black, but usually won’t drink it in the morning. Should I decide on having a cup, it is usually in the early afternoon to keep me going throughout the day. Instead, I prefer to drink a big glass of ice water at breakfast and take another cup with me to start my day.
The Drink: I prefer a good heavy beer and am always searching for a great doppelbock or stout. My favorite has been Ayinger Celebrator Doppelbock, but I am excited to taste the beers from around the area. I have heard great things about Augusta Brewing’s Hyde Park Stout and can’t wait to try a pint downtown. Being from St. Louis originally, I am also a huge fan of Schlafly Coffee Stout.
The Food: Well, first off let me start by saying I can’t believe how great Washington’s selection is. When Dawn and I first came to Washington it was by chance. We took a look at an open house downtown and decided to check out this wonderful city. We ate at Marquart’s Landing that day, and it will be a staple of ours for years to come. I can’t wait to ride one of the motorcycles down to the Landing and enjoy some of the best bar food I have ever had. We have also had the pleasure of enjoying Aldo’s Pizza who was more than happy to deliver to us on the day we moved into our home. I don’t think I have had that great of a pizza in years and it was surely welcome. I could go on and on about other places we have tried so far like Cowan’s, Ernesto’s, Los Cabos and more, but I don’t think it would be fair for me to pick a favorite before I have tried them all. I would love more recommendations if anyone has any! We have heard that the Old Dutch, Blue Duck, and others offer more incredible options and we are anxious to try them all!
The Shops: How do I put this into words? The shops of Downtown Washington are too good to be true. Dawn and I first visited Waterworks Antiques the day we stumbled into Washington. We were enjoying the riverfront and were so impressed with the building, the selection, and the friendliness of Waterworks. We took a stroll downtown and I quickly realized that places like Country Living, Fern & Sycamore, I.B Nuts and Fruit Too, East Main Antiques and so many more would be regular hot spots for us to spend time on the weekends. Dawn and I both love antiques and hunting to try and find that perfect piece. Washington gives us the option to do that and so much more and all within minutes of our home. Dawn is also working in Hermann, Missouri, which is a place that means a lot to us as a couple. You can’t beat the record selection at Hermann’s Attic and I highly recommend it to any out there looking to find the perfect LP to add to their collection.
The City: The moment that we arrived in Washington, we knew that we had found our home; the place that we would want to start our married life and raise a family. The city is so welcoming, friendly and clean. It has all the amenities that one could need, but without sacrificing the beauty and history of downtown. The local businesses were an added bonus! The real draw of Washington though is its residents. Our Realtor Janie Schriewer instantly made us feel at home and has welcomed us to the community in a way that we would have never imagined. Marlene Skrivan at Franklin County Bank was wonderful to work with and made us feel even more confident about our decision to live in Washington. Etta “Boots” Bonney feels like a mother to us both and we could not be more thankful for her wonderful support and care. Dawn and I are both so excited to keep meeting the wonderful residents of this city and can’t wait to learn more about the city and its people!
The Place: When I was a kid, my family would take road trips to Washington on Sundays after church. I remember going to Ponderosa and wandering around Wal-Mart, but the place that always stuck in my mind was the riverfront. I had little memory of what it actually looked like when Dawn and I first came to this incredible city. The riverfront park is the place that I think will always be special for me. Getting to walk hand in hand with my lovely fiance along the train tracks, taking photographs by the river, Dawn and I plan to make the riverfront a place that we visit as often as possible. It is so peaceful and wonderful and really makes it feel like home.
The Book: I am sucker for Hemingway, Steinbeck, and Orwell, but the book that will always be special to me is the Pokey Little Puppy. I know, I know, Golden Books are meant for children, but I will always treasure reading that book when I was a small child. Seeing its cover in a grocery store rack or a bookstore by chance still makes me smile and brings back fond memories. I look forward to the day when Dawn and I can read it with our child and pass along something that meant so much to me.
The Movie: My interest in film goes beyond the casual viewer; I was actually got a minor in film during my time at the University of Missouri. To pick a favorite is really hard for me to do, so I think I might just share a couple that give you a better idea of my range of interests. I am a huge Woody Allen fan so Annie Hall has to be near the top of the list. The way that Allen captures the realism of a relationship in almost a conversational matter is just incredible to me. He breaks down the imaginary wall and speaks directly with the viewers and allows himself to really show his side of the story. There aren’t many films that I could watch over and over, but Annie Hall is one of them. Another would have to be Alfred Hitchcock’s Rebecca. I really wish that it wasn’t out of print because I would probably buy this movie for a lot of people. It has everything that a good film should have and is just shot beautifully.
Your Personal Space: The best place to be is always next to Dawn, no matter where we are. I love cooking dinner, making homemade salsa, and curling up on the couch to watch a great movie or one of her favorite shows. Spending time with her and our dogs is something that means more to me than I could ever put into words and there is never anything that could top that. While we both enjoy going out and meeting new people, our heart is always with one another and sometimes we need that night at home to just relax and talk about everything under the sun.
The Friends: By far my best friend is my fiance, Dawn. We could just be together and talk forever without tiring of one another. We are both excited to meet new friends here in Washington who have similar interests. We moved to Washington from Columbia, Missouri where we both attended college. While Dawn and I stayed in Columbia, our friends slowly began to move around the country. While we still keep in touch, it is so exciting to know that we have found our forever home and can’t wait to become part of the community. We look forward to making even more friends who ride motorcycles, enjoy dinner parties, and know the importance of family.
The New Job: Could it be any more perfect? A day after moving into our home, Dawn and I got best news possible when Downtown Washington offered me a full time position. Becoming the Event Coordinator is special for a number of reasons. It was the stunning downtown that captured our hearts when we first visited; it was everything that we had ever wanted, but better. It was so much like Columbia, but better. It was cleaner, friendlier and more inviting. I knew instantly that I wanted to help this community grow in whatever way I could, but never imagined that I would get the chance to work for an organization that’s sole purpose is to preserve and promote downtown. I had found the job positing when my fiance shared it with me on Facebook. Our Realtor’s son, Derek Schriewer, had shared the posting on his page and as soon as she saw it she knew that I would be the perfect fit. I was so excited to hear about the opening that I got all of my information together and mailed it in as soon as possible. When they made me the offer, I knew that it was one that I could not turn down. I am so excited to join the team and help the community in any way possible.
Your New Home: Dawn and I looked at a lot of homes in Washington, but we couldn’t find just the right fit. We had two homes to sell in Columbia as we both owned, and wanted to find a place that would suit us now and in the future. We were looking for a forever home; a home that we would one day want to have a child in. We probably looked at everything on the market and finally found the perfect place. The day that I first saw it, Dawn was at a family function and wasn’t able to come with me. I took a video of me driving to the property and walking through the house. When I was looking at it, I knew this was the home. She called me while I was standing in the master bedroom with our Relator Janie and she could tell by my voice that we had found our home. When I got home that night I showed her the video. She didn’t even make it a minute into it before she said, “We have to make an offer on this house.” It was meant to be from day one. We were so taken with the property that we thought it best to write a note to the sellers letting them know just how special this place was to us. We did not know Dr. Sam or Etta “Boots” Bonney then, but after agreeing to a contract we soon would. They have been so welcoming and happy to have us moving into the home they had built and spent so many years in. We know how special of a place this was to them and it is just as special to us. We plan to spend the rest of our lives here; it is the perfect retreat, the perfect home, and full of love.
Downtown: As I said before, Downtown is such a special place to us. Dawn and I had planned on making downtown our second home and now that I will be working for Downtown Washington it can be even more. The local businesses are all so welcoming and wonderful that I can’t believe more people don’t know about Washington. I can’t wait to spread the word about our wonderful city and help it in any way I can.
I also just want to take a moment to thank everyone who has made this move so special to us. Everyone we have worked with has been incredible and we both feel so honored to be a part of this place. Thank you all, from the bottom of our hearts.
Photos: Alex Hodshayan
Welcome to Washington, Alex and Dawn! We are so excited to have you!