Monday, May 30, 2016

Memorial Day

Today, the Lord willing, I will do what I do every year on Memorial Day. You probably know what I do because I write about it every year on Memorial Day.  The last couple of years since Cathy has been in Florida, my friend Tim has joined me for the trip.

So always in the past, when it is time to go, I get in the car and load up any kids that want to go with. The older they get, the less that they want to go. I don't blame them, I didn't want to go to the cemetery with my parents when I was young either.

Anyway, we load up and drive I-70 to Sterling. North on Sterling to Winner Road. Left on Winner, through the beautiful Englewood district. Turn left on Truman road. Up the hill, past the monument company, turning right into Mt. Washington Cemetery. I have gone there every year on Memorial Day since I can remember [except when we lived out of town.] My parents took me there as a boy and told me the stories of the people buried there.

Into Mt. Washington, take the first left, wind up the hill, keep left, then near the top, turn right. The road dead-ends in the Rosehill Gardens section. At the end of the cul-de-sac is the Toll plot. My Grandmother on my Dad's side was Mary Lee Toll until she married my Grandpa Brinkman. My two sisters and my 4 cousins and I are the remaining heirs to this burial site. There are about 8 grave sites left there, more if people choose to be cremated.  When I was younger I wanted to be buried there, now I want to be cremated and my ashed scattered in the redwoods.  I want to be useful in my death and help the trees keep growing.

When we get there, I will look around and remember. Remember being a boy. Remember my Mom and Dad. I will tell them about how the church is doing, and how the kids are doing.  I will tell them that I am moving to Florida. I will tell them everything is ok. But, they already know that. I will tell them that I love them and miss them. We will linger for a while, then drive the long way through the cemetery, past some of the more notable chapels and tombs. We will emerge on the north side on what I guess is 24 highway, but I am not sure. Come to think of it, I am not sure of the name of the road. All I know is that there used to be a Dairy Queen right there.  It closed.

Cemetery. Dairy Queen. Home. That is how it used to go.  I hope when my kids take their children to the cemetery to visit, that the DQ is open again.  If it is, they will stop at the Dairy Queen when they are done. It's a tradition.

All in all, Memorial Day is a time to be thankful for life. O dear Lord, we are so blessed. Thank you so very much for all of the wonder and glory and joy of life. And you, dear friends, thank you for the privilege of sharing this life with you. I am grateful for every single one of you.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

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