Christmas Day, and I’m giving a big shout-out to Old Chicago Pizza for handing out free pizza to folks! I only happened to hear about this last night from Patty at the Mission; and so I’d determined to pedal on in for somewhere to go today. To give you an idea of the turnout, they’d been serving since 9:00 am (it wasn’t widely publicized, by the way) and so when I got there with just a half hour left to go (at 2:30) this pic shows you the line. Mind you, it was quite cold with a biting wind, a school bus full of children was just filling back up to leave, and there were still many small children huddled in line against their mothers; so the scene struck me as quite poignant on such a cold gray Christmas Day. And especially with downtown Boise otherwise so completely closed and deserted. Well, I skipped the idea of pizza for myself–instead claiming a tangerine someone had left behind on one of the concrete sidewalk plant pots–and pedaled first over to Corpus Christi’s sanctuary, then up around Boise’s Hyde Park, and then back downtown–again looking for a warm place to duck into until dinner time at the Rescue Mission. Once back into town I found refuge at The Cruz coffee shop (which the owner had just opened up on a lark), had a pleasant conversation with him on ideas for invigorating traffic–like bike parking inside, etc.–and then I headed over to the Misson. Christmas dinner turned out to be really pretty good: lots of meat (I’m guessing shredded turkey), leafy salad, green beans, spuds and gravy, and plus I lucked into two deserts since the guy across from me didn’t want his. I also had a fun conversation with the same guy who I’d just seen at Corpus (a big fellow who’d helped Patty reach up and unstring two dozen Christmas stockings she’d knitted and hung for the kids) and so I’ve got to say I’ve had a pretty memorable Christmas Day. I think it says a lot when a lonely old fudger like myself can put together a Christmas Day for himself with just a bike, coffee money, and a camera phone. I personally consider that pretty memorable. Merry Christmas everyone and may God bless!