June 18: I drove along my favorite country road, all forests and horse farms. A llama smiled at me. And above the pasture, I saw in the sky an enormous ring of smoke and then contrails in the shape of a winter tree — three branches emerging from a thin trunk. A plane pulled out from one tip and streaked landward. Maybe … maybe… the Thunderbirds are practicing over my head today?
June 19: At the beach, an armored knight strode toward me, bushy red beard projecting from under his chain mail cap, a broad chest protected by an even broader breastplate. His gray form was interrupted by two splashes of color at his hips. He got closer. His chain mail cap dissolved into a tight nylon hood. His breastplate became a front pack. And the spots of color? The socks of his baby, out for an oceanside walk.
June 20: We assembled five camp chairs, a radio, and a rotating fan on a long extension cord. Our neighbors’ front lawn had become the front row for the Ocean City Air Show high overhead. WW2 planes flew close enough to see the metal frame of the pilot’s canopy. But best of all were the Thunderbirds: shrieking, banking, diving and rising. They flew in stunningly close formation. And we hoisted our beers down below in salute.
June 21: I pushed my garbage can from the curb to the back of the garbage truck. The driver leaned his head out the window and greeted me with a warm smile. “We’ll do that, Ma’am. Let us take care of you.” I smiled back. My day had just gotten so much better.
June 22: The finches on my bird feeder scattered. Another blue jay? No, a juvenile fox, trotting along my garden bed. It paused long enough to “water” my vinca and moved out of sight.
June 23: I inhaled deeply to savor the fresh cut lumber, tilled dirt and soft grass, tightly cut and glistening in the early morning sun. Pushing past seasonal allergies, my nose decided to curate my morning walk.
June 24: This week launched Liberty Amendments Month in Virginia. In celebration of the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which abolished slavery, we pondered (in person!) the contradictions of simultaneously enslaving people and protecting freedoms. We are asking the right questions.
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