Written by; Gary Wonning
Sometimes we don’t know how things are going to turn out and at first something thought negative turns into a great experience.
Our Shrine temple has a Thursday luncheon every week and about 250 Shriners meet for lunch to enjoy camaraderie, good food and fellowship. Because of other commitments I’m not always able to participate. This past week, I was
able to attend.
The nobles normally start arriving at about 10:30 and since I didn’t make it until nearly 11:30, most of the seats were already taken. Sitting down at an empty table located next to the door and restroom, I began to feel very bored and about as useful as a pogo stick in quicksand. I assumed that sooner or later another brother would come and join me. Not to be disappointed, a friend soon appeared and because he at one time worked in the intelligence community we began to have a very enlightening conversation.A short meeting always follows the lunch , during which time they introduce all the visiting Nobles.
I will have to admit I wasn’t really paying much attention, just applauding in the proper places to welcome them. The last noble to be welcomed was a 90 year old visitor from Massachusetts.
He gave a very heartwarming introduction saying that he considered us all friends even though he had never met most of us and was extremely grateful for having the opportunity to have lunch with us. The man was almost in tears because a buddy of his took the time to bring him to the luncheon. It was a very touching moment. He also expressed gratitude to have had the opportunity to serve in the military during world war 2.
As he walked past me after leaving the podium he stopped and touched me on the shoulder, and with a tear in his eye, said,” I just don’t want to leave this world while it’s in the shape it’s in.”
Now that’s something you can hang you hat on.
Wow! How do you respond to that?
Here is an individual, who is a World War 2 veteran, has seen the depression , fought for his country, has without a doubt done more than his “fair share”, and still wants to do more. To me that man is a true
To me, that man is a true patriot. It was truly a refreshing comment, quite contrary to some of the statements made by many of our present day entertainers and dignitaries.
I realized once again that the universe normally gives us the experiences we need , if I hadn’t arrived late and would have sat somewhere else, I would not have had the opportunity to experience first hand what this country meant to this great, old soldier.
Gary has been a writer/ photographer for over 20 years, specializing in nature, landscapes and studying native cultures. Besides visiting most of the United States, he has traveled to such places as Egypt, the Canary Islands, much of the Caribbean. He has studied the Mayan Cultures in Central America and the Australian Aboriginal way of life.Photography has given him the opportunity to observe life in many different parts of the world!
He has published several books about the various cultures he has observed.
For more information and a link to his hardcover and Ebooks, and contact information: please check his website, http://www.journeysthrulife.com.
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Throughout man’s long history on earth, there has been one group of people who have carried the torch of liberty and freedom throughout the ages, from time immemorial until the present day. In these days, their counsel is needed more than ever.