We had a quiet Veteran's Day here. We wrote our columns for the art publication in Birmingham and afterward we did morning chores.
With both of us working part-time, things have a tendency to pile up, but today, we knocked out our lists.
We stopped watering the garden when it became apparent we'd have to use too much water keeping the sad plants alive we mowed the area until next spring.
We are watering the blueberry bushes because we have a lot invested in them and the harvest each year is abundant.
After a nap at noon, we decided to drive to the local Starbucks for a coffee. It's a treat for us, and we were in the mood. As we stood at the counter, contemplating our order, I asked the clerk if there was a discount for veterans today. She smiled broadly and said, "Your coffee is free today. And thank you for your service." I smiled a thanked her for the peppermint mocha.
My Army experience seems like a lifetime ago – but sometimes it feels like yesterday. I can still feel the weight of the duffel bag on my shoulders. I've never had boots that fit me as good ad my Army boots. I wish I still had them.
Many of the good things that have happened to me were because of my time serving our country.
After serving my time Uncle Sam footed the bill for my job training and later picked up the tab so that I could complete my first two years of college.
Later, when I applied at MaBell, the hiring manager told me my service was the deciding factor in their decision to hire me.
It was during Vietnam, but my duty station was in Panama which is half a world away. I would have gone there, but it wasn't in the stars. I'm thankful I can look back on my time and smile. Many of the soldiers who served during that time don't have that luxury.
I've read stories today of soldiers who gave their lives while serving this country. We owe them a debt that we can never fully pay.
I salute them.