Friday, September 11, 2009

Friday Quote Day

There are no shortcuts
to any place worth going.

~ Unknown

Well, I live in West Virginia, and I can tell you truthfully there are no shortcuts anywhere, worth going to or not! I saw Senator Jay Rockefeller (D-WV) on television yesterday say that just four percent of West Virginia is flat land. When you add the curves that go around the mountains, you get long distances to nowhere.

Today is another one of those travel days. I've had far too many of them this summer. This weekend I'll be going from the Middle of Nowhere, WV, to the Middle of Nowhere, KY, for a retreat. This is the tenth year my husband and I have gone, and while I'm not particularly enthusiastic this year, I know I'll enjoy myself and return home renewed and relaxed.

Except for the driving.

The retreat is held at a beautiful state park with easy walking on the roads within the park and harder walking on the woodland trails. I plan to take advantage of both while I'm there. I feel good about getting back on the horse (the five-mile daily walk), and I don't want to lose my momentum, especially at a place that affords beautiful walking opportunities.

I'm taking some simple knitting with me, a wool bag that will eventually be fulled and donated to a charity event my daughter-in-law is helping coordinate. Only 10 more rows to go on the shawl collar of my sweater, but those are very long rows and the piece is warm and bulky and too big to take to a retreat.

Today is, of course, the anniversary of the destruction of the World Trade Center in New York. Will we ever forget where we were, who we were with, how we heard the news when it happened? My older granddaughter was just four years old and even she has a faint memory of planes flying into buildings, although my daughter tried to shield her from the news. My son and his wife were less than a month from their wedding date, and considered postponing the party. Somehow it just didn't seem right. Baseball and football games were cancelled, malls closed, we glued ourselves to the couch and watched news and more news. There wasn't much sleeping at my house.

Airplanes quit flying. That was the eeriest thing for me, to be outside and not see or hear airplanes overhead.

The fabric of America changed forever that day. We were knitted together for a while, united in sorrow and patriotism. And then … we weren't.

We are more divided now than at any time since the late '60s. I'm not sure the terrorists could have counted on this dividend of their attack. They succeeded in crippling our economy, but how could they have hoped to cripple our soul?

And what are we to do about it? How can we again become one nation, indivisible? Where is our respect for each others' viewpoints? What has happened to civility? I do believe in free speech, I do, I do, I do.

But not at the expense of good manners.

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