Monday, July 23, 2007

Welcome Home

I'm traveling again, out in the country a ways. Dinner tonight was with a local guy, a friend who does some work for my organization. We drove through the small city I'm staying in, headed out to the smaller city where he lives. He bought me a good steak at the local restaurant, then took me down the street to the ice cream shop where his daughter's working for the summer, where she's embarrassed to have her dad come in with his friend, but still likes the attention, at least a little.

It's a nice small town. There's still a main street, and a few businesses, and no chain stores near enough to kill them off anytime soon. The crops are coming along alright, at least so far. It won't be a banner year, but with a bit of luck the harvest will come in enough to pay the bills.

Everywhere I went tonight, there were signs welcoming home the local boys and girls. A unit based nearby just got back from a two-year deployment overseas. Iraq. A few guys got hurt over there, but not too bad. They were lucky.

There were posters in the storefronts saying, "Welcome home 1 LT Jones" or "Welcome home SGT Anderson" and there banners in front of houses. One said, "Welcome home Daddy, I missed you."

The people who live here love their sisters and fathers and cousins and friends and neighbors, they love the people they know who happen to be soldiers, they love their soldiers, they love them just like people do everywhere. They lost them for a while, but they got them back, this time they got them back whole.


Anonymous said...

If only that were the case for everyone.