Thursday, May 19, 2022

Visiting Gettysburg

 For the past two Mondays I've visitied Gettysburg...I live about fifty miles from the battlefield; this is something that I think I'll be doing regularly.

Happily, I no longer approach the place as a Park Ranger, but as the nine-year-old who traveled there with my father in 1962.  It's a lot more fun that way.

I stopped by the visitor center and found my good friend and old rangering buddy, John Hoptak, in the midst of swearing-in a new Junior Ranger.

John and I had a swell visit, and I was gratified that it wasn't all "remember when" stuff, but rather, reports and reflections on fatherhood, family, and other threads of real life.

John is a great guy, a fine historian, and a peerless Ranger (now that I'm retired, that is).

Maybe you and I will bump into each other on the battlefield, stop me and say hello - that'd be nice.

(retired) Ranger Mannie

Pomp and Circumstance

 (cue the music)

Saturday was graduation day at Hagerstown Community College, and out of over 400 graduates, nearly 250 opted to "walk" as they say.

I volunteered to help out, and my job was to pass out gowns and mortarboards to the Johnny-cum-latelys (see what I did there?) who hadn't ordered ahead.

It was a wonderful event, and I must say that I got goosebumps when the faculty, in all of their differing and colorful, academic regalia, marched in.  

To the strains of Pomp and Circumstance (unfortunately, rendered on bagpipes) the grads made their procession.  It was very exciting.  

The applause at the end nearly brought down the fiieldhouse.

It was a perfect day, among many, many perfect days...these days.

Go Hawks!

(retired) Ranger Mannie