The CNN.com lead story from the weekend is overwritten, interrupting its showing with telling. But those parts were honestly the ones that affected me most when I read the piece late Saturday on my phone, distracted for a minute at a roof get-together. The story comes from Section 60 at Arlington, where many of the new war dead are buried.
Memorial Day weekend brings even more activity and more visitors. Adults, even some uniformed generals, walk slowly between the rows and rows of headstones, looking for a familiar name. But small children often seem to find the cemetery a place to explore, even play. Their smiles and curiosity remind grown-ups that even in a place synonymous with death, life goes on.
One of the best things about living in the Washington area is how life and history go on simultaneously, and the Rolling Thunder motorcycles have only this afternoon stopped roaring outside my windows for the first time since Friday. Their friends without bikes have been on Metro at all times too, a few catching up with each other on when they were headed over to Arlington. I feel lucky to live down the street. The bugle calls I hear from my place aren’t from the cemetery but from our mutual neighbor Fort Myer, but it’s nice in the hills we all hear the same songs.
If you’ve never been to Arlington or want better memories of the place, I again want to recommend National Geographic’s Where Valor Rests.
Like I mentioned two years ago, friend Staci’s pictures are throughout the book. In the copies Rob and I have, thanks to our parents, taped inside the cover are photos of the Arlington resting places of my mom’s parents. We love our neighbors, and we know they’ve loved us too.