Blossoming Kite Festival

I traveled to Washington D.C. at the beginning of the annual Cherry Blossom Festival.  How to know when the festival is to be held?  Apparently, there is one mysterious cherry tree of unknown breed that reliably blossoms 7-10 days before the other cherry trees open their blossoms – for this reason, it is referred to as the “indicator tree.”

The National Mall, site for the annual kite festival, provided some interesting photo ops of the city; the festival includes demonstrations and competitions and  professional kite flyers attempting to show off their talents to music, not knowing in advance what song would be played.  With only the cooperation of a slight breeze, I was amazed that the kites could even take flight (video & photos below).  Maybe, it was just that I am a lousy kite flyer, trying to blame it on the lack of wind!

The festival is a week-long family affair, with parades, hands-on activities, art demonstrations, performances celebrating Spring, blossom sightseeing cruises, blossom bike paths, river rides, and lantern parks to celebrate the cherry trees, a gift from japan in 1912.

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A “killer” tote bag

During my recent trip to the Washington DC area, I was browsing in a hair salon waiting area. A shelf full of colorful, alligator-type textured hand clutches caught my eye.


In looking closer, I was shocked at the tag displayed with the bags and really couldn’t believe my eyes!


Why in the world would something like this be on the market & who, in their right mind, would buy one?   Anyone have any thoughts?

Metro Signs

During a visit to the Washington D.C. area, I took the Orange Line of the Metro into the city.  It suddenly dawned on me,  how confused a non-English speaker could be, when faced with these transportation signs.  I immediately thought of the automated ticket machines in Paris, for non-French speakers, as a comparison.  We tend to take it for granted that things are easy, so I tried to put myself in someone else’s shoes – as a type of role reversal.  Have you encountered this type of situation?

metro map automation IMG_0003 entrance

bench seat