Sunday, June 8, 2008

ICCA tour

Last night I had a great evening having dinner with Erick, Stuart, Matt, Karl, Dave and their wives at King Street BBQ here in DC. Mmmm, mmmm good. That was after a day of sessions at the ICCA conference. Good stuff as each presented on their areas of expertise and gave the attendees some good info. We had a van tour of the national park at night - first time ever for me. All I can say is WOW. We saw all the big monuments which I saw as a teenager and then again a few years ago - Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln - but we saw several that I had seen pictures of and never been able to visit in person before.

I was most impressed by the FDR monument. What a tribute to a great president. The area is huge, but it had many of his quotes on the walls and just was well done. I also got to see the Korea monument with the larger than life soldiers moving toward the enemy. The Vietnam memorial was so powerful with so many names along that long wall. And the Iwogima memorial was overpowering as those 5 men planted the flag. One note of interest was the additional hand on that monument. Tour guide Matt explained that the artist had put an extra hand in the design to represent the hand of God. What a powerful message. The WWII memorial we saw from a distance, but it too was so significant in our history. I am greatful that our country is continuing to make investment into remembering the past. Too often we take so much of our freedom for granted. One of the quotes I saw somewhere last night really struck me and I am not sure which memorial or monument it was on but it was "freedom is not free".

Many have sacrificed all to make this a free nation. That is what gives us the ability to chose to have a job like we do - making technology work. That freedom also allows us to move freely about the country, to assemble at events like this ICCA conference or more importantly to worship freely each week in our churches. We need to never forget the cost that has been paid that makes our country what it is today.

The notable thing about my trip here to DC this week was that most everyone had their wife with them except me this time. Nancy is usually the lone wife on a lot of my trips. That is really what enables me to keep the travel schedule I do - her support and willingness to be part of our work and my passion. We have a shared vision to invest in people and make a difference so we do it together. This weekend it was time for some mom and daughter sewing time as Laurie wanted a new look in her apartment. So I was on my own. I missed her greatly and wish she could have shared in the experience. But I know what she was doing was more important. I do encourage you to find ways to travel with your spouse. It makes life so much better and is key to staying connected and healthy. I realize that kids complicate that significantly, but where there is a will, there is usually a way. So ponder that and involve your spouse in your passion.

3 comments:

Stuart R. Crawford said...

Arlin, Janet and I enjoyed your company over the past couple of weeks. Looking forward to Houston.

Steve Riat said...

I have to leave a comment on how powerful the impace of some of the monuments you mentioned. I had the chance to see them just before 9-11. (Clearly I had no clue what was to come) If I was to suggest one trip that should be on every Americans list, I suggest Washington DC. As for the wife, I am going to take your advice this summer, I will see how this turns out and report back.

Dave said...

Arlin:

It was great having you in DC and glad you enjoyed it. It's quite a city, and I encourage anyone who hasn't been to come and see the place.

I love giving tours, for those who do come.

Dave