There is a very large Magnolia Tree across the street from our home. Every year at this time the sweet fragrance of its large-petal blossoms add much to my day. But, alas, it’s gone far too soon. Within a day or two the petals fade from ivory white to faded brown and then fall off. But, it I catch them just right as I did recently, I’m rewarded. Magnolia trees are an iconic part of living in southern regions of the United States. I’m glad I’m there to enjoy the beauty.
I recently attended the graduation of one U.S. Coast Guard Boot Camp class, in which our grandson was a part. Being retired military myself, I had looked forward to this day for months, even back to a time when he was working hard to get himself physically prepared at home in North Carolina, for the rigors of the training. Which, I learned, was a lot tougher than he expected. But all that was put behind the proud young men and women standing at attention before me and others, seated nearby.
Leaders made introductions and speeches, and afterwards it was time to present the coveted Certificates of Graduation to the 80-plus “Coasties” standing in formation.
And then it was over and family members like me moved quickly to shake hands, hug and generally say we too felt pride in the accomplishments made by these fine men and women. Within a few days each of the graduates would be off to their first assignment “in the fleet.” But first, a handshake and hug.
I’ve been fortunate to have lived and traveled throughout Europe, and it was during one visit to England when I learned there is a difference between a “graveyard” and “cemetery.” It’s all related to a church. This United Methodist Church in southern New Jersey in the United States, illustrates my point. In the 17th Century, burial places located on church property in Europe were called graveyards, but as the population grew significantly in the 18th Century, church yard space was filled and thus burial locations were located some distance away and … cemeteries were created. I’m happy that the United States has so many close historical ties to Europe, especially Great Britain.
Cape May is situated along the southern shore of New Jersey and besides the interesting and beautiful Victorian Style homes, private and rental, the colors and welcoming atmosphere is what made it enjoyable for me last week. Here are a few images made that might make you want to visit. Very unique “beach” location.