1. I bought Sally and Adrienne SmarTrip cards at CVS and the woman who waited on me seemed a little perturbed, but when I swiped my credit card in the payment machine and it honked because I didn't insert the card's chip into the chip slot, I smiled and said, "Shoot. I haven't been fully trained yet!", she laughed at me and the ice broke and our next few minutes of business were warm and friendly.
2. It turned out that the CVS store didn't have the machinery needed to add value to the card, so I buzzed over to the Greenbelt Metro station and went to a vending machine. Twice, machines rejected my attempts to purchase added value. I was very grateful that an employee of WMATA was posted at the vending machines. I told her I'd been rejected twice and she very kindly, without condescension, told me to try the "credit" option, that often the machines reject "debit". That worked. We shared huge smiles, I thanked her very much, she told me it was no problem, I stopped myself from hugging her, and I almost posted this most positive experience on Twitter where people in the DC Metropolitan Area post complaints all the time about WMATA employees. This employee was terrific. (By the way, WMATA=Washington Metropolitan Area Transportation Authority.)
3. The Deke and I love to motor down to DC Brau on occasional Sunday afternoons for a few freshly brewed local beers. I wanted to try DC Brau's limited release Scotch Ale, Stone of Arbroath, and am I every glad I did. It's a sweet, malty beer, kind of brown sugary, a perfect winter drink and a fun way to take a break from the more bitter IPAs and pale ales. While enjoying our beers, a mobile wood fueled oven from Timber Pizza had appeared in the parking lot. While I was settling up inside, the Deke was buying a perfectly charred, Neapolitan-ish cheese pizza outside. We took it to the Sube and heartily (lustily?) devoured the small pizza before heading up to the Diazes where we paid a visit and ate some take out from Lucky Noodle. We may not need to eat for several days now.