Steamy weather did not deter first lady Laura Bush from a little shopping sojourn to Old Town last week. Accompanied by her sister-in-law Margaret (wife of Marvin Bush)and her Secret Service detail, the first lady stopped in at Restoration Hardware on King Street.

"We're having fun," she chirped, as her purchase, a floor lamp, was rung up.

Mueda to Challenge Moran

Matthew A. Mueda, 37, a former U.S. Department of Transportation official, will take on Democratic Del. Brian J. Moran, 45, in the 46th District race this fall.

Mueda, an Alexandria resident, works in real estate and is chairman of Alexandria's Sister Cities Committee. The 46th District includes parts of Alexandria's West End and the Skyline neighborhood in Fairfax County.

Mueda has tried -- and failed -- to overtake the Moran machine before. Last year, he was a candidate in the Republican primary in Virginia's 8th Congressional District, bidding for the right to challenge a brother of Moran's, Rep. James P. Moran Jr. (D). That role ultimately went to defense consultant Lisa Marie Cheney.

A Happy Return

It's not always finders keepers.

At least it wasn't for good Samaritan Ann Clark.

Alexandria police said the Fairfax County woman found an envelope bulging with $2,000 in cash last week in the 500 block of King Street in Old Town.

She called police looking for the rightful owner and then called again a few hours later, but no one had called looking for the missing cash.

Investigators say it wasn't long after Clark's second call to police that the niece of Luz Marina Montoya called to report that her aunt had lost the money.

Only thing is, Clark hadn't left her name with police, so the search was on.

Montoya, of Bogota, Colombia, told police that she was visiting her sister's family in Clifton. In an interview last week, Montoya's niece said the cash was "traveling money" for a month-long vacation in the United States.

She said that in the rush to leave their home for a visit to Old Town, her aunt forgot to take the envelope filled with money out of her purse. It slipped out when they were visiting Old Town later that day.

Montoya told police that some of the money was intended to purchase a computer for her daughter, who is studying industrial design at a college in Bogota.

Police said Clark learned investigators were searching for the money June 29 and quickly handed it over to a friend who knows a city police officer.

Montoya and her money were happily reunited Friday.

A footnote to this story: Police say that if you find money, turn it in, and if no one claims it in 60 days, you can ask for it back.

Several years ago, a woman found $12,000 (you read that right) on the street in Alexandria. No one claimed it. She took it to the bank.

Just last Thursday a man was reunited with $500 he had found and turned in to the Alexandria police.

"You can do the right thing and still make a buck," insisted Amy Bertch, an Alexandria police spokeswoman.

LAURA BUSH