A few weeks back we were in Savannah to visit Sam’s grandma, and the highlight of the trip for the little guy was the visit to the Roundhouse Railroad Museum. Only a few hundred yards from where my dad’s store Thrifty was located, this spot was always off-limites and behind tall fences when I was a kid. Abandoned from active use back in 1960s, I often picked blackberries in the adjacent fields as a kid, and recall vividly taking photos with my Canon AT-1 as the Ranger batallion from Hunter Army Airfield practiced urban combat in the abandoned buildings in the early 80s. Anyway, it’s now a wonderful museum of train history, with at least a dozen old engines and cars, including the restored switching engine pictured above. One of Sam’s favorite books these days is The Little Engine that Could (sam loves this version the most), so seeing the tiny (not blue) engine pull the much larger full-size steam locomotive was a highlight of the trip. The ash that covered us was an unexpected memento of the visit requiring a good shower afterward, but seeing the little engine belching steam was pretty darn cool. These demos take place twice a day on weekends and are well worth checking out. For more photos, see the full gallery here.
So off we headed to Savannah this weekend for some quality time with Grandma Rita, Uncle Jerry, and Scarlett. We stayed downtown at the Mulberry Inn (very comfy, thank you) and hung out with family for most of the weekend. We did explore downtown and it’s environs with Sammy, who had a blast riding the water taxi across the Savannah River, going bumpity-bump down the cobblestone ramps to River Street, and hanging out with our friends the Suszynski’s and their nearly 5-year-old daughter Maddie.
…But his dad didn’t so much. I was down with a nasty sinus infection and managed to lose my voice, but did enjoy disconnecting from the grid for a few days as we hung out in Savannah with my mom (who was recovering from a knee replacement, but is doing just fine now), Jerry, a friend of his visiting from out-of-town, as well as the lovable mascot of the clan, the ever-friendly Scarlett. Sam was initially a bit unsure of her, but warmed up to her obvious charms quickly. Click here for the full gallery of pictures from the trip.
My thoughts are with my dear friend Jan and her extended family this morning, as I’ve just learned that her father passed away unexpectedly on Sunday. Dr. Allan Wexler (Savannah Morning News obituary is here) was a wonderful man who raised an equally wonderful pair of daughters and fostered a wonderful home. I’ve known Jan (and her parents) since I was in kindergarten, and her father was always a smiling presence in their home. Dr. Wexler was active in all areas of his community – as a member of the B.B. Jacob synagogue, rising to the level of Lt. Colonel in the Georgia Air National Guard (165th Airlift Wing), as well as serving as a member of the board for the Savannah Association for the Blind – and let’s not forget what an avid Braves fan he was as well. The family has requested that in lieu of flowers remembrances be sent to the Georgia Optometric Foundation (donate online here or call 1.800.494.0060). Please sign the Savannah Morning News guestbook here.