Santa Claus flies planes not reindeers

I spent a few days in Washington, DC visiting my daughter and friends. I enjoyed walking the streets and looking at the buildings and sculptures. I saw this on my first day. It drew me in from across the street by the sheer anguish. I now know it is Andrew Sakharov, a Russian physicist who worked to develop a nuclear bomb and later became a human rights activist exiled in Russia awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

What a day!

I walked the alphabet streets from T-U and saw this along my way.

Lawn art

Loads of people were riding these bikes. They are available for rent at over 100 sites around Washington, DC. They are in metered bike racks and after signing up, you can use them for 30 minutes for free and then there’s a charge after that. What a great system. The bikes even have a cute little basket in front.

Capital bikeshare

After several days in the city, I was ready to get back to my sanctuary in the North Country where my town doesn’t even have a traffic light. As much as I like the energy and all that a city offers, I grow tired of the need to protect my “space”. I’m that bumbling tourist who doesn’t understand the metro system and who stops to look up at the buildings. On my flight home, I had a chance to observe the kindness of strangers. An elderly woman in a wheel chair was brought on board what became a full flight. Late in the boarding, a large, white haired and bearded man came aboard and took the middle seat next to her telling her, “Don’t worry young lady, you don’t have to get up”. I heard him tell her before we took off that although he was a retired fighter pilot, he now enjoyed working as Santa Claus during the holidays. When the flight attendants gave their safety talk about the oxygen masks, he told her not to worry because if anything happened to the plane during the flight, he would take care of her. I shed a tear in the seat behind them.

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