07. December 2005 · Comments Off on A Date Which Will Live in Infamy… · Categories: Domestic, General, History, Home Front, Military, War

In the summer of 1971, when the Girl Scout troop that I belonged to was doing a lovely and frivolous three-week excursion to the Hawaiian Islands, I talked to a man who said he was a Navy vet, and had been at Pearl Harbor on December 7th, 1941. He was, he said, on Ford Island, on a bicycle and on his way to the mess hall for breakfast, when several sorts of heck broke out. And suddenly, everything changed… and nothing was ever quite the same again.
Pearl Harbor, December 7th , 1941….

Arizona Turret

(Turret of the Arizona, taken from the memorial, 1971)

My daughter says she has a new understanding of that… she was on her way to work, the morning of September 11, 2001, at Camp Pendleton, that the whole thing began to develop as she was waking up, in the shower, driving into work… and when she got there, the Marines at her unit were all in the parking lot, listening to their car radios. And that for two or three days, the base was weirdly, curiously quiet.

History… it’s the thing that is happening, when we are on our way to breakfast and have other plans.

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