Seventeen years ago, billions of cicadas crawled from underground in D.C., Maryland and Virginia and began a weeks long period of cacophonous mating.
This spring, the cycle is repeating, but life looks different.
How much has our life changed? Take a look back at how the D.C. area looked in May 2004.
World War II Memorial
The popular World War II Memorial was opened in the spring of 2004. The dedication ceremony was attended by thousands of veterans who had served in World War II.
One tour guide with a particular fear of cicadas even asked a group of two dozen veterans to protect her from the insects — which, of course, they did, the Washington Post reported.
Anthony Williams was mayor of Washington, D.C.; George W. Bush was president and Barack Obama was a U.S. Senator from Illinois — not yet a household name.
In 2004, the Nationals were still in Montreal and known as the Expos. They had missed the cicada explosion by the time the team officially moved to D.C. and became the Nationals. Ryan Zimmerman barely missed playing in Montreal as the Nationals drafted him in 2005 for their inaugural season.
Television & Film
The milestone NBC sitcom "Friends" said goodbye and aired its final episode as the cicadas were hatching. And 17 years later, the same sitcom is streaming a reunion on HBO Max.
In the movie theaters, sequels to blockbusters like "Shrek 2" and "Spider-Man 2" were on the big screen.
Usher's "Burn" and "Yeah!" featuring Lil Jon and Ludacris were topping the Billboard charts in May 2004 along with Hoobastank's "The Reason," Mario Winans' "I Don't Wanna Know" and Beyoncé's "Naughty Girl."
Single-family home sales broke a record-high in the District in 2004, and the median sale price hit $372,000 (about $520,000 in 2021 dollars), according to the Urban Institute.
The median price of a single-family home in D.C. surpassed $1 million last year, WTOP reported.
The price of fuel was about $1.88 per gallon ($2.66 in today's dollars). Now, it's about $3.04 per gallon.
FaceTime and iMessage did not exist, as Apple had not yet released the iPhone. Instead, the hottest phone to carry was the slick, thin Motorola Razr V3. Another popular cell phone was the Nokia 2600.
To listen music on the go, music lovers carried an iPod instead of just their phone.
Facebook already existed, but it was limited to college students.
Social media users were instead spending hours personalizing their MySpace page and connecting with new people on Hi5.