Psalms 61;2b

When my heart is overwhelmed, lead me to the rock that is higher than I

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

A trip to the American Flag

I took a trip with the Residents of the nursing home to the city park here in town. They routinely provide trips for them to get "out" and do fun things...and they need a nurse to go with them. So I was asked to go, much to my delight. Okay, for the setting...it was a breezy, very warm day and they were going to have a cookout at the park...there were approximately 10-15 residents that participated...so we were all sitting under the pavilion playing Bingo when John asked to be pushed around to "check out this place". So I agreed to push him. Now, about John Doe, he is from up North, a Veteran, and is soooo northern in his attitude, demeanor, dialect, and personality...I mean, you can't talk to him 2 minutes without realizing he is not from East TN. He is fairly oriented, but confused at times as to where his location is... in other words, he is oriented enough to go to the park without getting lost, but couldn't make it on a trip to Food City by himself....

So, here we go, up to the parking lot...I am pushing him in his wheelchair and he is a pretty good sized man...I am huffing and puffing!!!! Now, at the park, there are only a couple sidewalks...otherwise, it is grass...all grass...well, we get to the parking lot and I say "Where do you want to go?" He sees the sidewalk leading to the flag...I want to go up there....

Well, imagine that!!! That is the sidewalk that leads up to the flag, which is on the HIGHEST point in the park!!! But, you know me, not to deny anyone in his condition anything, I take off...me pushing him...trying not to huff and puff in his ear as I am struggling to push him up the hill (needless to say, my legs were totally sore the next day!!!!!) So we arrive at the top of the hill, where the sidewalk ends..almost at the base of the huge American flag.

As we got to the top, he wanted me to stop. He wanted to salute the flag and he puts his wrinkled hand to his forehead and salutes. It is the most beautiful salute I have ever seen. He spoke these words. "Long may 'Ol Glory fly"

Wow!!!! How touching...so then we pause to look out over the view from the top of the hill...he sees the cemetery which he calls by a different name, thereby telling me that he don't know where he is...I almost laugh...but I don't correct him...let him believe he is where ever he wants to be!

Then he turns back to the flag...and he begins to speak...in a tone that sounds far off...not as if he is talking to me, but as if he is giving a speech to millions of American citizens...and there I stand, with the breeze blowing our hair, with the flag whipping in the wind, and listen.

"That is the best flag of all the nations...even the flags that have alot of colors like...(he pauses to think)....Argentina....they can be proud of their flag because it is so colorful, but even though ours has only three colors, it is still the best flag of all nations...Look at her...undisturbed except by the wind...see the ripples in it? See it waving? It is proud to be a flag. People wonder how this nation could stay together for so long without fighting...this nation was born in 1776...the birthday of a great nation-- we should always take time to honor July 4th as a great birthday. Let's see, the country is how old? 1776 to twenty 0 five..."I corrected him at this point, "twenty 0h eight" Bless his heart, he never did stop to figure how old...he just kept talking..."They placed that flag at the top of the hill so that all could see it. They put it up as the biggest flag in TN"...then he added "at that time" (Now, mind you, this is not a true fact...but how sweet for him to think so...) but I just let him keep rambling on...I wish I had a tape recorder so all could hear what he had to say about the flag...he then started talking To the flag....didn't hear all that he said, but his last words as he saluted were "Fly, Fly, Fly, 'Ol Glory, Fly" He took his hand down from his head and said I am ready to go...

Stunning...Absolutely beautiful...I am on the verge of tears....


3 comments:

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Kristi said...

I see the makings of a beautiful page!!!

southernbelle said...

You done it girl! You have captured a PERFECT picture of our flag. Great Job!
Lisa