3,000 vets on motorcycles from across the nation paraded in D.C. the Sunday before Memorial Day, while a solitary, saluting Marine greeted them out on Constitution Avenue. The Marine stood at salute for three straight hours while the parade of roaring bikes kept on coming. The parade is held in remembrance of those who have fallen in the military. The event is called Rolling Thunder. President George W. Bush used to greet the bikers before they paraded. No such courtesy or respect is shown now.
The camera is on the Marine a lot. Watch as he struggles with his emotions and struggles with holding his salute. The way he salutes is very touching; head lowered and eyes down in reverence for the fallen. I am an ex-Army Master Sergeant and I know what he was feeling. As I watched him, I could feel it too. It got to be overwhelming for him and the tears started flowing. Watch what he says when he finally breaks, but keeps right on holding that salute.
Tuesday, June 29, 2010
Saturday, June 26, 2010
Today was the firehouse hoagie sale. One Saturday every June our firemen drive up and down the streets of Stone Harbor in their engines shouting "Hoagies! Hoagies!" to the myriad vacationers running, walking, jogging, blading, or biking (like me) up Second Avenue.
Friday, June 25, 2010
Driving three (eventually four and a half) hours home from Baltimore on Wednesday, I faced a universal problem which is much tougher to solve on the East Coast than it is in Colorado. One of the first things I had noticed (when you're potty-training a toddler this is one of the first things you'd notice too!) when we moved to Denver, is how ubiquitous public restrooms are. Not just available, but usually well-maintained. (For some more detailed reading on this check out http://www.midchix.com/pg/pages/view/6007/). Better yet, the stores, restaurants, gas stations etc. that freely offered up the use of their facilities were frequently staffed by nice folks! And, to put the icing on the cake, the sinks have warm water!
Monday, June 21, 2010
Not sure who was the original source of these, though many of them have been attributed to the Dalai Lama. Regardless, I have had them printed out in color on my fridge ever since a friend forwarded them to me last summer. The first day of summer seems like the perfect time to share them. Like a mid-year musing on New Year's resolutions past and future...
1. Give people more than they expect and do it cheerfully.
2. Marry a man/woman you love to talk to. As you get older, their conversational skills will be as important as any other.
3. Don’t believe all you hear, spend all you have or sleep all you want.
4. When you say, “I love you”, mean it.
5. When you say, “I’m sorry”, look the person in the eye.
6. Be engaged at least six months before you get married.
7. Believe in love at first sight.
8. Never laugh at anyone’s dreams. People who don’t have dreams don’t have much.
9. Love deeply and passionately. You might get hurt, but it’s the only way to live life completely.
10. In disagreements, fight fairly. No name calling.
11. Don’t judge people by their relatives.
12. Talk slowly, but think quickly.
13. When someone asks you a question you don’t want to answer, smile and ask, “Why do you want to know?”
14. Remember that great love and great achievements involve great risk.
15. Say “bless you” when you hear someone sneeze.
16. When you lose, don’t lose the lesson.
17. Remember the three R’s: Respect for self; Respect for others; Responsibility for all your actions.
18. Don’t let a little dispute injure a great friendship.
19. When you realize you’ve made a mistake, take immediate steps to correct it.
20. Smile when picking up the phone. The caller will hear it in your voice.
21. Spend some time alone.
22. Open your arms to change, but don’t let go of your values.
23. Remember that silence is sometimes the best answer.
24. Read more books and watch less TV.
25. Live a good, honorable life. Then when you get older and think back, you’ll get to enjoy it a second time.
26. Trust in God, but lock your car.
27. Create a loving atmosphere in your home is so important. Do all you can to create a tranquil harmonious home.
28. In disagreements with loved ones, deal with the current situation. Don’t bring up the past.
29. Read between the lines.
30. Share your knowledge. It’s a way to achieve immortality.
31. Be gentle with the earth.
32. Pray. There’s immeasurable power in it.
33. Never interrupt when you are being flattered.
34. Mind your own business.
35. Don’t trust a man/woman who doesn’t close his/her eyes when you kiss.
36. Once a year, go someplace you’ve never been before.
37. If you make a lot of money, put it to use helping others while you are living. That is wealth’s greatest satisfaction.
38. Remember that not getting what you want is sometimes a stroke of luck.
39. Learn the rules then break some.
40. Remember that the best relationship is one where your love for each other is greater than your need for each other.
41. Judge your success by what you had to give up in order to get it.
42. Remember that your character is your destiny.
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Friday, June 18, 2010
Why, oh why, do I dread the ring of the phone? Or, maybe the better question is, why do people keep calling me? I, now understand my parents' ire when my brother and I were teens and the phone would ring incessantly. It was such an intrusion to them, such a possibility for us.
Wednesday, June 16, 2010
I crossed the bridge into Stone Harbor and it happened just like it has every time since I first started coming here at the age of one or two. My heart soared but my heart rate slowed. My body relaxed as if it recognized home. When I'm here, my brain teems with ideas, but rejects tension. It's magical.
Friday, June 11, 2010
Lessons Learned on a 4-day, 3-night, 8-state Extravaganza:
When making hotel reservations for the inaugural night, be sure the clerk who you will need to call after taking a wrong turn, doesn’t claim Tongues as his primary language.
Marriott VS. Hilton? Marriott- half the price/ queen beds instead of double/ free wi-fi/ free breakfast/ unlocked room fridge. The Hilton failed to mention that although they are pet-friendly, if you have a pet, you have to ride in the service elevator. But yes, the help was friendly to our dog.
Days Inn is called that because you should only stay there in the daytime.
It is always raining on the Pennsylvania Turnpike. (Mind you, I grew up there).
Weather really does affect your mood. Ask my children. (And maybe my mother).
Don’t plan a cross-country trip during a year when the Federal Government has ordered construction on every interstate road as part of a massive training program teaching men wearing orange how to hold SLOW signs.
Chevy Chevettes are not extinct.
There should be a Taser junior available over-the-counter to use on leering men in tattoos and wife-beaters that frequent the aforementioned Days Inns.
Triple AAA TRIP- TIK is great except that the implied “this won’t take long” drive times are comparable to the labor nurse’s “this won’t hurt” as she shoves the epidural needle in between your vertebrae.
Contents of our imaginary suitcase packed for our imaginary trip to Japan, as we imagined that we were passing the time in Iowa: apples, baloney, curlers, dead stuff, egg rolls, Francine from Arthur, guts, handy-dandy notebook, illegal drugs, Jewish rye, Kevin, lame mutt, mahogany buttocks statues, nutella, Orion, poop in a pot, questionable cheese, relish, seashells, tranquilizers, underwear, vodka, wet ones... Just before Y is when I began shrieking at the man from the Comfort Inn who kept insisting on giving directions in Tongues.
Apparently there are franchise opportunities available in Lion’s Den Adult Stores.
The cheapest motels sport bathroom fans strong enough to clean the attached room with a simple flick of the light switch, but blow dryers so weak, you have to stay an extra day if you want dry hair when you leave.
Fancy hotels don’t bother with a bathroom fan. Obviously the wealthy don’t need background noise to do their business; stage fright is not a problem when you have enough jack to go 5 -Star.
The moderate hotel is the best of both worlds… not only a light switch and separate fan switch (so you don’t HAVE to listen to the fan unless you are experiencing stage fright). And a much-appreciated curved shower curtain rod ensuring that washing away the day’s grime does not also include wearing the previous guests’ grime.
We believe that children (and dogs) should learn swear words in their own home. They are much less likely to be traumatized when hearing mom use the F-word while behind the wheel.
I take pride in the fact that my 10-year announced (while eating yet another burger at another rest stop) that there’s only ONE swear word that he doesn’t know the meaning to. I cringe when recalling that I then actually asked him what it was. “Ho” he says. Well, last year he had come home from school and told his dad he’d learned a new bad word but didn’t know what it meant and didn’t want to say it. After my hubby suggested he spell it… it was tough to keep a straight face when he whispered H-O-R.