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On to Kyrgyzstan

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A Return to Tashkent We came back to Tashkent on the high-speed train and it is much cooler here. As hot as it gets during the day, you can sleep with the windows open at night as it drops into the 60’s and there is no humidity. It’s easy to see why silk road travelers […]

Uzbeks and the Bear

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King Cotton Uzbekistan labored under the yoke of either Czarist or Soviet repression from the mid 19th-century until the fall of the USSR in 1991. Some of that repression is directly tied to the American Civil War when the availability of cotton was interrupted by President Lincoln’s “Anaconda” plan to strangle the Confederate states with […]

Uzbekistan: On the (Rail)Road to Bukhara

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Fast Train to Bukhara It’s early Saturday morning here in Uzbekistan, hot already, and we are on the high-speed train to Bukhara, one of the ancient and great cities of the Silk Road. “Silk Road” refers to the trading routes stretching from Beijing all the way to Syria which were in use thousands of years […]

Guiding: Mac and Cheese and Drain the Swamp.

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It’s June already and we are in the throes of the D.C. guiding season. It’s that time when you can barely remember one group from the next nor what you said or to whom you said it. This is my ninth year and and for the first time, I have had eighth-graders inform me with […]

Stillness

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Last evening, the beginning of Memorial Day weekend, I found myself at Arlington National Cemetery touring with 8th-graders from Ohio. It was 6pm sharp, we were at the Tomb of the Unknowns, and the changing of the guard was underway. It being the day that it was, a sentinel was in charge rather than a […]

Fairfax: Boy’s Club Wake-Up Call

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Hernandez Settles and Fairfax Pays In January, the U.S. Fourth District Court of Appeals issued a withering and decisive opinion regarding Fairfax County’s appalling handling of the Magaly Hernandez complaint. Hernandez alleged a hostile work environment with sexual harassment and retaliation, the Court agreed that a jury could well conclude the same. From the Fourth […]

Leadership: Selective Belief

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“Mr. Kelly has told Mr. Trump it is frustrating for staff members that the president deems most news media stories fake news but believes the ones accusing various advisers of leaking, according to people familiar with the discussions.” (NYT)     Whether you love or hate Donald Trump, that sentence, buried deep in an article, […]

Windy City

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Upturned Everything and Azerbaijan It’s been a gusty few days here in the Capitol, I was walking up 22nd st. Friday evening when a howling wind stopped me in my tracks. Thankfully, the temperature has been not so bad making the wind, its longevity and speed, more of a curiosity than anything. But, to be […]

IAFF Leg Con: Three Free DC Walking Tours

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DC Sites: History and Background Many folks know I have been a licensed DC guide for nine years. As a way of thanking my brother and sister IAFF members for their hard work, I will lead three free tours during the conference. Tour One will be of Arlington National Cemetery. Tour Two will be of […]

Fairfax: Barlow Seeks Stanley’s Removal

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Ignorant in the Classic Sense The Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department (FRD) and its union, IAFF Local 2068, continue to be roiled by controversy, most recently from the twin shocks of the resignation of Battalion Chief Kathleen Stanley from her role as a Women’s Program Officer and from notice of the retirement of fire […]

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