Thursday, May 23, 2013


There's a certain sort of freedom that comes from a long holiday weekend. A loosening of the intellectual and civil mind. A relaxing of the norms and standards with which we live our day-to-day lives. A celebration of nowhere to go, no schedule to keep and no social obligations beyond being a good neighbor, a civil partner and a reliable friend.

I find this freedom especially rewarding on days such as today. It's the day before I leave with The Man Behind The Curtain (TMBTC) and The Terrorist on our annual migration to The Lake. We always take an extra day before and after this holiday. Extra time to buy the groceries, get the camper ready, pack the clothes and dream about what we won't be doing while we are up there.

We won't be answering phones or email because there is no phone or email service.

We won't be preparing healthy, fully balanced meals because our appetites rage more in the carnivore and junk food range.

We won't be worrying about our cholesterol or our waist lines because we will be hiking and playing games and strolling about talking to our camping neighbors and we always come back weighting less than when we went.

I won't be writing, because TMBTC prohibits it. I will be reading, because books are always allowed, every where, every time. I will be talking smack over games of cards or Ringer, kicking back, drinking prodigious amounts of adult beverages, running several miles each day along the lake shore while he walks The Terrorist and thinks about fishing.

Usually that's all he does: thinks about it. Even if he loads up his tackle box and rod, he doesn't really fish. He's too much like me; more interested in soaking up the clean mountain air, enjoying the sunshine, the birds, the wildlife and the friendly folks around us. We've been going up there for six years and he has yet to actually "fish." But he can if he wants to, because he too has the freedom to do whatever he wants.

And we earned it.

It's Memorial Day, and we've both earned it.

It's our day.

Our fathers and grandfathers day. Even our kids' day. We've all served our country. We've all sacrificed time and memories and holidays and our health and even, some of us, our lives to ensure that every one of us has this freedom - this choice to do or not do.

So here's to us, and to you. Here's to those who did and did not come home. Here's to those we are still serving as we ensure our Navy has safe ships that operate on time, every time. Here's to those who struggle to face the freedoms and the memories that come with them, to remember what this day is about and for, and to be grateful that we are free, and can take an extra couple of days off and go to the lake. And drink. And talk smack.

Oh yeah. There will be much smack-talking as our twelve year running Gin-rummy game takes on another year.

Happy Memorial Day - remember those who gave it to you and be safe out there!

How's about a little "30 Seconds To Mars" to get things started? Hell yeah!

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