September 16, 2009

Continued Dick and Lynn Murphy.

Was a Naval Academy graduate and from the time he entered the Naval Academy he spent nearly his entire career as a naval officer. Having the opportunity to tour Annapolis and the Naval Academy with Dick and Lynn as your tour guides was a real treat. I found myself during our tour of the Naval Academy is a him to be quite moved by the vision and commitment that Pres. Kennedy made to the space mission. And, was very obvious the support that the U.S. Navy has played in the fulfillment of that mission. There were 52 astronauts that were from the U.S. Navy. I also observed something that was probably obvious to most people but it hadn’t touched me as it did when I was there. And that is that every Naval Academy Air Force Academy or West Point graduate knows when they enlist that they are prepared to give their life for their country. And they will do it without question and with honor.

Before we left far Charlottesville on September 9, we toured the campus were impressed by their air in the discipline that is displayed continuously by the midshipmen. At 1204 the entire student body assembles and is accounted for. 35 minutes later 4400 midshipmen have completed their lunch. That is impressive!

On Wednesday evening Mary and I got to have dinner with Alison Murphy our niece and her three roommates. Four extraordinary young women who are attending the University of Virginia. Allison’s three roommates are in pre-med so Allison has to put up with the fact that she is considered to be the lightweight academically in their apartment.

Thursday morning the 11th Mary went off to her executive committee meeting and I was able to view the model the Lawrence Halperin design and critique for the Charlottesville Mall project. Although this project was constructed in the mid-70s a select group of architecture students from the University are doing a project currently to capture the historic significance of the design and the intention prior to the changes that are being planned to occur soon.

I then had the opportunity to tour the school of architecture and meet some of the students as they worked on some of their projects.

That evening we had dinner with the members of the executive committee Dean Aylward and his wife Sherry at their historic home near the campus. Once again I was impressed by the relationship that Virginians have our history as a country. It’s hard coming from Missouri to think of homes that are 300 years old. Or to relate back on regular basis to the founding principles of our country. It’s University of Virginia it is a regular conversation.

On Friday after a tour of Staunton Virginia the birthplace of Woodrow Wilson we attended a black-tie dinner for the Thornton Society. Then Saturday morning we proceeded to head toward Washington DC and meet our sister and brother-in-law at their home in Centerville Virginia where we sat on their deck and enjoyed a beautiful launch and catch up conversation.

After lunch we drove to Washington DC where we spent the rest of the afternoon driving around town and getting a sense of where everything was in relationship to our hotel on M Street. We then met our friends Chris and Jen Long for dinner at a restaurant called Marvin’s. Great food, interesting environment and extremely noisy. Sunday morning we got up went to nine o’clock mass with Chris and Jen and their two beautiful girls Audrey and Ingrid. After brunch in Georgetown we headed to the mall where we toured for two days.

We started our tour at the Holocaust Museum. Even after following the chronological order of the times that led to Hitler’s reign, it is hard to imagine the elimination of 6 million Jews in Europe. We proceeded to walk long be World War II Memorial reflecting pool in front of the Lincoln Memorial and then headed back to our hotel. We had extraordinary dinner at a place called by Vadalia a unique French restaurant that is based upon Southern cooking served in the French form. The best meal of the trip!

On Tuesday morning September 15 Mary’s birthday we left on a 615 flight from BWI to STL arriving at 7:20 AM. And as if it was a flash, our week away had the experience of “where had the time gone?”

Tuesday, September 15 to walk for 20 minutes.

Wednesday, September 16 I walked far 16 minutes after breakfast had physical therapy and observed better movement in my legs while on the bike and learned a few new strengthening exercises for my hips. I decided today that other than at nighttime I will be using my walker in and around the house instead of my chair. This will provide a number of things. More time on my feet and better strength. I have to remember to allow for additional time to do everything and that includes not waiting too long to get to the bathroom or allowing enough time to get downstairs and out to the car. Although, this is new to me I know it will be good.

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