We just attended Eddie's graduation from Military Police Training, which included a family day where the soldiers had the opportunity to show their families around the base. At one point, we were outside, looking at some military vehicles they had gathered in a small park area and, out of the blue, a bugle call began. Eddie immediately stopped to salute until the music stopped.Well, we had never experienced this before, so we needed explanations! He proceeded to fill us in and this is basically what that is all about:
Each day, there are three "ceremonies" that take place:
signifies the beginning of the official duty day, and the raising of the flag.
signifies the end of the official duty day and the lowering of the flag.
began as a signal for lights out at the end of the day, although now it's also used for funerals and memorial services
For each ceremony, all soldiers are expected to stop and salute the flag or salute in the direction of the music until the music stops. Civilians are expected to stop and place their hand over their heart. And all traffic is stopped.
To the ordinary person, this probably seems silly. (We were certainly confused!) But, when you are there, and are a part of it, it's very moving. And it made me think about the lack of "ceremony" in most of our lives and how much better it might be if we had a little bit of that, or at least a reminder of that, every day. Sure we have "ceremony" at certain times- weddings, funerals, religious services, etc., but these things happen once a year, once a month, once a week- maybe. Don't you think it would be a good thing if we all had certain times of the day, every day, where we had to stop and pay respect to, remember and honor someone or something? A time where we are all on the same page at the same time. Think about the positive changes that might bring about. Especially now, with most people trying to do three things at one time for most of the day, every day. Hmmm.... I think it would be good.
|Eddie, my dad and C. during "Retreat". *photo by Alicia Marie|
Anyway, I thought it was funny that the confusion led to a bit of irony. Today is July 4th, a day that is all about paying respect, honoring and remembering. And how do many of us do this? By having lively festivities involving large amounts of alcohol, of course! So, you see, there is a connection between the two words after all. At least in my world! That's my story and I'm stickin' to it :)
Have a great 4th of July!! Juli