Monday, May 28, 2012

A Memorial Day Walk

We took a family walk today and ended up in the Key West Cemetery.
It's half a block from our front door.

Our first stop: The USS Maine Monument.
I love military cemeteries.
It's like you can feel the courage and love that drove these great men to serve their country and their fellow Americans.

I hope I can instill in my children a love for country and for freedom.
And a sense of gratitude for what we have.
Because you know what?  We have it so good.

Sometimes I worry that my children will fall into that trap so many around us are in.
The trap that makes them believe we are entitled to all that we have.
But what people seem to forget - or maybe they never knew it to begin with -
is that everything we have has been bought with a price.
And in most cases, the price was so many lives lost.
For us.
I want my children to understand just how blessed we are to be Americans.
To understand that we truly do live in the greatest country in the world.
Because we are free.
I want them to know that the rest of the world does not live like we do.
And I want them to be grateful.
Because they are not entitled to this life.
They are blessed to be here.
And I want them to have a sense of duty.
That they will help to keep us strong and free and good.
So today, we remembered.
And we looked forward, too.

Since we were in the cemetery, and what outing would be complete without annoying my family with all my picture-taking, have a look at how they do graves here on our tiny island.
We call them "apartments."

And here's two reasons why...
1. We're on an island.  Sea level.
Oh, and there are storms.
The rain "showers" are enough to send me looking for a boat, so I can't - and don't want to -
imagine what it's like in a hurricane.
Things sink.
2. Again, we're on an island.
Limited space, if you catch my drift.

The family plots are my favorite.
So many stories wanting to be told.

And I've always loved the Jewish tradition of placing stones on graves.

Finally, I'll leave you with our favorite epitaph of the day.
Apparently, Pearl was a well-known (it's a small island) hypochondriac.
And she had the last word!

Happy Memorial Day!

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