|The Sandwich Rapper
The official newsletter of Daniel W. Turner III. Please address all of your comments and questions to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please make the subject of your email "Sandwich Rapper Response" so it will not be mistaken as junk mail. Thank You!
May 29, 2004
Do we really remember?...I would like to start this issue by wishing all of you HAPPY MEMORIAL DAY!
The last weekend of May every year has traditionally been known as the official start of the summer season. The activities scheduled for this holiday weekend usually consist of festivals, picnics and parties.
I have realized that most Americans have forgotten the true meaning of Memorial Day. I have to admit that until the start of the war on terrorism I had lost sight of the meaning myself. I am ashamed to say that I have forgotten that this weekend has been set aside to remember those heroes who gave their lives in military service to our country.
We Americans have been awakened to the cruel reality of the cost of war. We all either have lost or know someone who has lost a friend or love one in the war in Iraq. I would like to urge every civilian to do two things. I would consider it a personal favor if you would walk up to every soldier, sailor, marine and airman your cross pathes with and thank them for the sacrifices they make and the hard work they do. I would also appreciate it if every civilian would reach out to all military families and show them we care about them. The families of our sevice men and women make a huge sacrifices as their love one do their job to ensure our freedom.
I'm not saying that we shouldn't enjoy the festivities that will be held the next couple of days. I am saying that we should also be aware of and thankful to those who memories we honor.
Author's note...I have archived all of the issues of The Sandwich Rapper that I have published so far. I have editied and modified each story and placed them in collection of hard copy issues that are formatted in the style I now use on the website. Please email me and tell me which issues you would like copies of if you are interested in reading some of my previous work.
There's no place like McIntosh...I always find some little something that I can only experience in my hometown that I have never been able to experience elsewhere. I don't know if these things or imagined. But I am aware of them every time I visit.
I was home recently to attend the festivities that my family and friends held for the graduation from high school of my oldest godson. I stayed at the home of the guest of honor, his parents and siblings. We barbequed a good bit over that weekend. I spent a lot of time outside. It had rained just before nightfall that Saturday. The storm didn't last long. The sunshine returned just in time to bring something to my attention just before dusk.
I had left one of the presents I had bought for the graduate in my car. I walked out to get it just after the storm passed. I noticed that there was a definite different in the enviroment. The sun seemed a little brighter. The colors of the trees, plants and objects around me seemed more brilliant. The smell that lingers after a good rain seemed to be sweeter. I was just in awe.
I was telling a psychiatrist friend of mine about my recollections of my recent trip home. I asked him if he thought my hometown experience was unusual. He told me that my experience was enhanced by my hyper-sensitivity to emotional situations but wasn't odd at all. He added that most people hold qualities about their hometown closer to their heart than qualities about other places.
I will probably never make my home in Washington County, Alabama again. I will always return to the place of my youth when my soul needs to be rejuvinated and my energy levels replenished. I have to agree with Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz when she said, "There's no place like home."
The best of both worlds...I am often asked why I try to stay connected with the daily lives of my family and friends in Washington County but remain adamant about making my home three hundred and fifty miles away in Huntsville. People are confused why I am looking to buy land in both Madison and Washington counties. The answer is quite simple.
My heart will always make its home in Washington County in general and McIntosh to be specific. I cannot ever see myself turning away from my roots and disassociating with the people and places I grew up around. I have always felt a strong connection to water, no matter if its the Gulf of Mexico or The Tombigbee River. I have the habit of traveling to be near the waters of my youth whenever I feel overwhelmed by life.
I left southwest Alabama to seek better employment opportunities and improved medical treatment for Bipolar Disorder. I have fallen in love with the Tennessee Valley in the three and a half years I have lived here.
I live a ninety minute drive from downtown Nashville. I have always been a huge country music fan and being this close to Broadway and The Grand Ol' Opry is an advantage to living here. I really enjoy being able to get away from reality and take a day tour of the sights of Music City.
Huntsville is one hundred miles from Chattanooga. Chattanooga is important to me for three reasons. The Sticky Fingers barbeque restaurant chain has a store their. Their food is tremendous! Chattanooga is also home of the best karaoke bars I have ever had the honor of performing in. The people at The Brenard Street Cafe are extremely hospitable and friendly. The atmosphere at Brenard Street is so warm that you will never feel like a stranger. It's one of my favorite places to spend a night out on the town. The aquarium in Chattanooga is a fun place for me to go. The animals they have on exhibit there are so entertaining to me. They remind me that one of the rules of survival is to never take anything (including yourself) too seriously.
The city of Huntsville has it share to offer when it comes to peaking my interests. I am a sports maniac! I share the same city of residence as The Huntsville Stars (AA afilliate of the Milwaukee Brewers [that's Ok! They're still a good team]), The Tennessee Valley Vipers (Possibly the best team in The Arena Football League 2) and The Huntsville Flight (An NBDL franchise). Huntsville also has been able to bring top quality musical acts to town for concerts. Music is an important part of my life.
I need to maintain my connections in both southwest Alabama and the Tennessee Valley to stay (relatively) sane. I have to keep a balance between the beach and the mountains to stay who I am. That is why I work to stay connected in both places.