Vol. 13 No. 31 - May 22, 2013
Soon it will be Memorial Day, a day to honor our soldiers who died so that we could live and enjoy life in America, including right here on Anna Maria Island.
We’re remembering them.
And we’re remembering a different island.
The Island before McMansions replaced cozy cottages.
The Island where a traffic jam meant that you were a driver’s education student who stalled in first gear.
The Island where neighbors knew each other for more than a week’s vacation time.
Even without a declared war, this year, in high season, people were downright combative.
But like they did in “Apocalypse Now,” in the War That Did Not Exist, “You either surf or you fight.”
We tried to surf more than we fought.
We keep in mind that somewhere offshore, a dolphin leaps.
A white ibis dines on coquinas at the shoreline.
A sea turtle turns toward the beach, where she will lay her nest tonight.
It’s late, and it’s time to put the paper to bed, and ourselves.
But we must keep our memories awake, of our Island, and of our honored dead.
Our paradise – the way of life they fought for – is not yet lost.
It’s not over ‘til it’s over.
But when it’s over, it will be.
So, as Winston Churchill said during one of the wars to end all wars, “Never give in. Never give in. Never. Never. Never. In nothing great or small, large or petty, never give in, except to convictions of honor and good sense.”
And on Memorial Day, take a moment from your beach day at 3 p.m., the “National Moment of Remembrance,” and give a thought to those who died and how to preserve the way of life they died for.
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