Tuesday, September 7, 2010

NM Day 3, 9/2/2010

Wednesday.  Wednesday was the day we were going to brave the car once again and do the famed "Enchanted Circle" of New Mexico.  So in the car we got? went? drove? and headed to Eagles Nest.  On the way we saw this:

We named it the Veganess Monster (Vega being field in Spanish since it's clearly not in a Lake)
Check out the pointy teeth.

Wow, that's all I have to say.

When we reached Eagle's Nest and I got over the fact that it wasn't a Hitler museum, it turned out to be just a small town.  There was a lake, but that's all.  And perhaps it was the angst of being in the car again, but I didn't take any pictures.

Next stop was the Vietnam Memorial

Part of the memorial is a chapel.  It was small but it was effective.

David and I went around the front of the memorial to take a few more pictures and there was a Vietnam veteran sitting on a bench overlooking the valley.  We didn't say anything and all we shared was a glance.  But I couldn't help but notice the sound his leg made as he walked away.  At first glance you couldn't tell anything because his jeans covered everything well, but as he walked there was the accompanying mechanical sound and motions.  He had a prosthetic leg.

It got me thinking.  I've never been comfortable with Vietnam.  I am a history major and I eat up everything WWII along with Civil Rights, slavery, etc.  But every time Vietnam comes up I'm all of a sudden uncomfortable... and that saddens me. 

Vietnam was not a popular war.  The men and women who served didn't have the privilege of fighting "the Good War" as WWII was often called.  Vietnam was not about our freedom but that doesn't mean the men and women who served their country are any less than those who serve today.  Or those who served before them. 
I have ignored it because it confuses me.  No clear cut lines.  No clear cut good or bad.  Just confusion. 
I'm glad we went to the memorial.  I'm glad I saw the veteran. I'm glad for the chance to understand it a little bit better if for nothing more than to understand those who had to suffer through.

We did more than just the memorial but I confess, I wasn't it the best of moods.  We went to Toas and the drive there was absolutely beautiful but we didn't stop to document.  The road was too busy and narrow.
We did spend time in Toas, visited the Kit Carson Museum, walked the streets and of course sampled the food.
We enjoyed our time.

On the way back I got a picture of this tree:

It's a bit difficult to tell from the picture, but the vine has almost completely covered the skeleton of a tree.  I thought of the beauty that comes even in death.  A simple flowered shroud to bring beauty for a bit longer.
It seemed an appropriate all considered. 

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