of memorial day and my buried inner patriot

We all went down to the local Memorial Day parade this morning. It seemed like a fun thing to do with the kids. It turned out to be more than that.

It was an introduction (for them) to small-town America at its finest. I didn’t expect to be so moved by it. Somewhere deep under my developing world-traveler/ex-pat self there is apparently a staunch patriot still dwelling. I am grateful for the veterans and the servicemen and the sacrifice they’ve made for our nation. But I think it was the whole scene that got me. There were waving flags and bunting and crowds of distinctly American people. It was all fire engines and girl scouts and old Fords and little leaguers.

We live in a place where the adjective “American” is not a compliment and nearly everyone seems very critical of and ignorant about the United States. One gets used to hearing it and learns to laugh it off. But it felt so good to be back and stand there as a part of my people at their colorful summer best and celebrate together our great country and those among us who have served it.

My dear sister-in-law and I went shopping afterwards. “We could drive the other way,” she said, “but we might hit parades in three more towns.” They’re happening all over America.

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2 Responses to of memorial day and my buried inner patriot

  1. Cara says:

    When I was young and traveling throughout South America, I wanted so much to throw off my Americanness. I was naive to all the blessings and benefits we enjoy in America. I realized how much I had changed when we came home on our first home assignment. After three long, hard years in West Africa, where people were constantly asking me what I was doing in their country, and chiding me for doing EVERYTHING wrong, I immediately burst into tears when the man at customs in New York took my passport and said, with a big smile, “Welcome home. We are glad you are back.” I LOVE America! Doesn’t it feel good to come home? I am glad you had such a moving experience. Imagine what it will be like when we really go Home, and our Father welcomes us and says, “Welcome Home, I’m glad you’re here.”

  2. Pingback: one don’t: Don’t compare | part of the main

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