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Making way for a cultural exchange

On a Sunday morning stroll through a Moscow park along the river, the most unusual sculpture appeared on the walkway. I knelt down to read the inscription on the plaque, and to my delight, I found a literary connection to the United States. In particular, Boston and The Common are the settings for a beloved children's story, Make Way for Ducklings, read univerally in many languages.

To be truthful, my tour guide led me in that direction purposefully, and she stood back while I came upon the imaginative piece given by Mrs. Barbara Bush in 1991 on behalf of the children of the United States to the children in the Soviet Union. For the history books, this was a little before the dissolution of the Soviet Union (December 1991) into Russia as it is known today.

I had been occupied photographing Saint Barbara's convent across the river, and almost failed to notice what was in front of me. It did bring me closer to home on the third week of a lengthy trip if even for a few minutes.

Make Way for Ducklings by Robert McCloskey was a staple on my daughter's childhood bookshelf, and after visiting Boston, it became more meaningful each time we read it together.

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