Sometimes, you get lucky.
My son and I trudged through a couple of feet of snow – literally – last Friday to the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. We practically had the Mall to ourselves – government workers were making their way in to work for the first time in a week and the snow was seemingly deterring other tourists from braving the sites.
As we made our way up to the Lincoln Memorial, there was a very narrow path cleared in the marble steps leading to the top of the temple. A barricade had been partially blocking the way, but had been moved aside. We climbed up the steps, carefully watching our feet and holding onto the rail with real purpose.
We got to the top to find several military men and a park ranger.
“You’re not supposed to be here”, said the Ranger.
They were about to place a wreath on the Lincoln Memorial statue dais for President’s Day. And we were practically the only two civvies up there – aside from the photographers hired to capture the moment.
We promised we would be quiet as mice and found an unobtrusive viewing point.
And captured the moment in video below.
I’m not one to be overly patriotic. I don’t have “we support our troops” magnets or “America: Love it or Leave it” bumper stickers.
But being in that place, at that time, made me feel more “American” than I have felt in a long while.
Timing is everything.