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Christmas in Baltimore…

December 29, 2019, 8:35 AM

So Christmas was pretty fun this year.  On Christmas Eve, we had dinner with some of Elyse’s father’s relatives, and then on Christmas Day, we got together with some of Elyse’s mother’s relatives.  This was my first holiday with my new, smaller stomach, and so I was still getting used to its new capacity, figuring out how much I should take, what will be tolerated, and so on.  I believe that I overdid it by a tad on Christmas Eve, likely by eating foods that I wasn’t ready for yet, but I more or less nailed it on Christmas.  When you have a gastric sleeve like I did, you have to chew everything really well, and also not drink and eat at the same time.  Generally speaking, you have to give your stomach time to process the food that it just took in before resuming liquid intake.  Also, if you put too much in at once, it will get rejected, either by getting sent through to the intestines, or it’s coming back up.  But anyway…

After dinner on Christmas, Elyse and I went planespotting near BWI.  We had discusssed doing this for some time, even before our planespotting adventure at National, and on this particular occasion, it just worked out.  We were already in the Glen Burnie area, I had my real camera with me, and we had about an hour or so of daylight to play with.  The location where you typically planespot for BWI is actually specially designated for that purpose: the Thomas A. Dixon, Jr. Aircraft Observation Area.  It’s a very nice area that’s operated by Anne Arundel County, with a walking trail, playground equipment for the kids, and plenty of space to watch planes take off and land.  On this particular day, planes were landing over the park, and so I got some landing photos.  When it comes to planespotting at BWI, it can, for the most part, be summed up in one word: Southwest.  BWI is a focus city for Southwest, and as such, sees more Southwest traffic than anything else, and that also means a lot of Boeing 737s.

So here’s some of what I got:

N443WN, in the new Southwest livery.
N443WN, in the new Southwest livery.

N263WN, in the old Southwest livery.
N263WN, in the old Southwest livery.

N7745A, seconds away from landing.
N7745A, seconds away from landing.

N922VA, an Airbus A321-253N for Alaska Airlines.
N922VA, an Airbus A321-253N for Alaska Airlines.

N649AW, an Airbus A320-232 for American Airlines.  This airliner wore liveries for America West and US Airways prior to becoming part of American.
N649AW, an Airbus A320-232 for American Airlines.  This airliner wore liveries for America West and US Airways prior to becoming part of American.

N258JB, an Embraer 190AR for JetBlue.
N258JB, an Embraer 190AR for JetBlue.

An Air Canada propeller plane that I caught with my phone because I had already put the camera away.  Unfortunately, I can't make out the tail number on this one.
An Air Canada propeller plane that I caught with my phone because I had already put the camera away.  Unfortunately, I can’t make out the tail number on this one.

And in between those non-Southwest arrivals, I got a bunch of Southwest flights.  So all in all, I didn’t have a bad time, though I would love to come back here a little earlier in the day, and when I have clearer skies.

After this, we headed into Baltimore, in order to go to the “Miracle on 34th Street” Christmas light display.  This is a display that occurs on the 700 block of 34th Street in Baltimore, and is very much a neighborhood effort that has become something of a tradition (in other words, if you move in on this block, you are more or less expected to decorate).  The lighting displays were pretty good, with some more elaborate than others.  Take a look:

Not bad, if you ask me.  It definitely seems worth a look in future years, because a Christmas display is never the same two years in a row.

After this, we headed over to Ellicott City to see the lighting display on Red Hill Way.  I’ve discussed this guy’s lights in this space before, and he certainly does “DREAM BIG” when it comes to his display:

And of course, on the neighbors’ lawn:

And here’s the display in action:

All in all, I think that we had a fun day.