Wheel Chair For Two, Please

Just in Case You Need It

I finished up the week working with a group of eighth-graders from Lamar Middle School, a touch of irony or humor that was lost on both them and me.

It was a superb day at Mount Vernon and down at Pioneer Farm it was sheep shearing time, the old fashioned way.

A very fit young lady, drenched in early morning sweat, held down an adult female sheep as she sheared her using 18-century clippers.

Sheep Shears

Sheep Shears

Amazingly, the pelt came off in one piece after a pitched battle that lasted 30 minutes.  The pelt will be washed and sold for the wool since the Mount Vernon herd has a 16th century pedigree.  I guess the wool must be warmer.

By the way, almost no one walks the extra five minutes down to Pioneer Farm.  It is a several acre tract that is operated by period-dressed workers describing and demonstrating 18th century life and agriculture.  Like all of “official tourist” Washington, just walk five extra minutes and see something totally different and interesting.  (And get away from the crowds.)

Pioneer Farm

Pioneer Farm

One of our two “motor coaches” broke down en route back to the city which seemed to be a regular occurrence as one or the other was always laid up for some reason, thrown belts, transmission problems, etc.

Twas a spectacular afternoon on the Mall and it is all the better as our army of food trucks now line the cross streets offering much needed food choices from the $6 slab of dried dough called pizza at the Natural History Museum.

The “Lamarians” were checking out the stones and bones in Natural History and I had taken partial possession of a park bench facing east on Constitution Avenue near the Hop On-Hop Off buses.

They were mostly hopping on as it was getting close to five o’clock.

Up the Constitution Avenue sidewalk comes an ancient codger sitting in a wheel chair  very quickly “walking himself” with his feet while holding a cane in his hand.


When near me he was caught up to by a young man who drops the “m-efer” bomb causing the old fellow to fairly leap out of the wheelchair and shinny up on top of the museum ledge.


Where upon the young lad grabs the wheelchair and disappears in the crowd back down Constitution Avenue from whence he came.

He reappears a short while later wheeling an elderly woman in a pretty blue print dress.  On arrival she jumps out of the chair and shinnies up next to the octogenarian; now two peas in a pod.

A few minutes later the Hop-On bus pulls up.  Junior heads for the bus with pops a close second, on his feet,  cane still in hand and unused.

The Mrs. is right behind, pushing the wheelchair at a rapid pace.

And off they went.

Who needs “Night at the Museum”?

Daytime is plenty funny for me.







  • Mike Schwartz says:

    Great st.ory telling. Very funny.

  • Smitty says:

    Very funny, Eric. Keep the stories comin.’

  • Spartacus says:

    Guess that’s how they roll.

  • David Barbour says:

    Can hardly wait.

  • Victoria Huckenpahler says:

    Eric — This reminds me of something that happened to Huck several years ago. A friend and he were driving in Tarzana, CA., when the driver behind them parked his car, got out carrying a white cane, went to the other side of the car, and let out his seeing eye dog! Until your story today I thought stuff like this only happened on the West Coast!

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