Two Septembers ago JGL and I took a trip up to Bedford, VA to check out the D-Day Memorial. I was an incredibly moving trip, and made even more so because there were dozens of veterans at the Memorial touring. We inadvertently followed this one particular man all the way through, and it always seemed like we were intruding on such a personal moment and memory of him. When we got home and started going through our pictures, we discovered that we had captured this moment.
When you leave the D-Day Memorial you pass a small patch that’s fenced in, and I think I was the only fool at the entire Memorial who was excited about seeing a replica of a Victory Garden. During WWI and WWII when the war affected not only the future of baseball, but the ability to produce crops as well, people throughout the United States, United Kingdom and Canada began home gardens with the intention of taking pressure off of traditional food sources so those resources could be put back to our soldiers. For women, children, and families who may not have had the ability to be active participants in war, Victory Gardens became a way for people at home to feel like they were contributing to the greater good, and truly helping our country move towards a common goal.
I love the concept of gardening for a purpose, and in this day and age I think it’s a lost art/cause of sorts. Sure, there is a local movement sweeping the nation, but sadly not with the same force that the Victory Garden movement had years ago.
And for me this is what Memorial Day should be all about–finding purpose in a moment of giving thanks. So many of our service men and women have given their lives so that we can live in a country that is free. And freedom for me is the ability and chance to be better–to be a better steward of the environment, to cherish family and friends and be thankful that we’re here, and to never forget the sacrifice that others have given so that I can have the life I have today.
So I’ll be planting more tomatoes, line drying laundry, and sticking close to home today, but a big thank you to everyone out there who give us a reason to celebrate and be thankful today.