Those Brits

President Trump’s visit to London brings back many delightful memories of the several trips my wife and I made to that fascinating city. Every visit, we seemed to discover something new, something surprising. For example, did you know there is a section of London referred to as ‘Little Venice”? It’s a canal on which you can take a boat trip along the London Zoo to Camden.
One of the best things about London, we found, is the underground system. Any place we learned about, Little Venice for example, we were able to navigate to with ease.
On our first trip, in 2000, we connected with long-lost relatives, natives of Sicily, from which my mother-in-law’s family originated. On a subsequent trip, we reunited Mary, the former Mary Saporito, with a niece from Sicily whom she had never met. Her niece was actually older than she.
Mary was in her 80s then and had a bad heart so I reserved wheelchairs for her at the airports in the U.S. and London. When we arrived at Heathrow, the fellow assigned to wheel her through the airport was delighted to hear we were from Pennsylvania. It turned out he was an aficionado of the American Civil War and one of his dreams was to visit Gettysburg.
When we arrived back at Heathrow for our flight home, I told my wife and her mother to wait on a bench while I went off to find her wheelchair. I spotted a bevy of them lined up behind a uniformed fellow at a desk. I approached him and said, “Excuse me, I made arrangements to get a wheelchair for my mother-in-law.”
To which he responded, without hesitation, “Sounds like a pretty good trade to me.”
You have no idea how many times I’ve told that story since.

Ed Ackerman