So one of the promises that I made partner/son/website-builder/tech-guy extraordinaire, Kevin, was that I would be more consistent in writing blog posts. I don’t mind the writing part – it’s the coming up with ideas that stymies me. We put our heads together and thought that it would be interesting (to you and to us) to witness Sasha Obama’s arrival at her first day of school at the Sidwell Friends lower campus in Edgemoor, a Downtown Bethesda neigborhood.
First, I need to confess that this school is only two blocks from my house – so I wasn’t committing to fighting traffic and traveling any distance. But we, as neighbors, had had many discussions and were totally convinced that there would be a frenzy of activity and some inconvenience, at least initially. We expected to see hoards of reporters and streets closed to traffic as we set out on our journey. In fact, before we left our home in Bethesda, we turned on the TV and saw that a local crew was reporting from the Upper School where Melia had been dropped off, so we assumed the same crowd would be at the Lower School for Sasha.
As we approached the campus, we saw one lone Montgomery County Police cruiser parked at a corner. It was just at the beginning of “drop off time” and the number of cars approaching the entrance to the school was actually quite thin. There was a young man standing near the driveway with a notebook in hand, but we saw no camera crews. We continued on the sidewalk around the side of the school and passed three or four men who certainly appeared to be members of the Secret Service, but there was no overt presence of extra security.
After making our way around the back of the school, we turned around (we were trying to get a good picture of the school) and on our return trip, it appeared as if the Secret Service was no longer there. More cars were entering the driveway, but it was orderly and calm and just another morning. As we retraced our steps back home, we were approached by the young man with the notebook who turned out to be a Washington Post reporter. We chatted and agreed that the arrival of the President Elect’s daughter had been handled extremely inconspicuously. As a matter of fact, I think that we decided that we felt out of place and a little silly. No streets were closed, there were no camera crews, no hoards of reporters…..a welcome site!!