Thank a Vet


“As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.” — John F. Kennedy

I am unsure where the story came from, but as a veteran myself (21 years Navy), I love the story and the sentiment behind it.  It is not my own, but I love positive stories of the men and women who have served my country and this is really a great one.

The rest of this is the story that is written as I received it.ann m

it’s a story about one of the soldiers in this picture with Ann Margaret and what happened years later when he met her. It will take you about one minute to read it. Here’s the rest of the post:

Richard, (my husband), never really talked a lot about his time in Vietnam, other than a sniper had shot him.

However, he had a slightly grainy, 8 x 10 black and white photo he had taken at a USO show of Ann Margret with Bob Hope in the background that was one of his treasures.

A few years ago, Ann Margaret was doing a book signing at a local bookstore.

Richard wanted to see if he could get her to sign the treasured photo, so he arrived at the bookstore at 12 o’clock for the 7:30 signing.

When I got there after work, the line went all the way around the bookstore, circled the parking lot, and disappeared behind a parking garage.

Before her appearance, bookstore employees announced that she would sign only her book and no memorabilia would be permitted.

Richard was disappointed but wanted to show her the photo and let her know how much those shows meant to lonely GI’s so far from home.

Ann Margaret came out looking as beautiful as ever, and, as second in line, it was soon Richard’s turn.

He presented the book for her signature and then took out the photo.

When he did, there were many shouts from the employees that she would not sign it. Richard said, “I understand. I just wanted her to see it.”

She took one look at the photo, tears welled up in her eyes, and she said, “This is one of my gentlemen from Vietnam, and I most certainly will sign his photo.

I know what these men did for their country, and I always have time for ‘my gentlemen.”

With that, she pulled Richard across the table and planted a big kiss on him.

She then made quite a to-do about the bravery of the young men she met over the years, how much she admired them, and how much she appreciated them.

There weren’t too many dry eyes among those close enough to hear.

She then posed for pictures and acted as if he were the only one there.

That night was a turning point for him. He walked a little straighter and, for the first time in years, was proud to have been a Vet.

I’ll never forget Ann Margaret for her graciousness and how much that small act of kindness meant to my husband.

Later at dinner, Richard was very quiet. When I asked if he’d like to talk about it, my big, strong husband broke down in tears, “That’s the first time anyone ever thanked me for my time in the Army,” he said.

I now make it a point to say ‘Thank you’ to every person I come across who served in our Armed Forces.

Freedom does not come cheap, and I am grateful for all those who have served their country.

If you’d like to pass on this story, feel free to do so.

Perhaps it will help others to become aware of how important it is to acknowledge the contribution our service people make.

— Wife of Vietnam War Veteran.

Day ~ 22 The new normal?


There really isn’t anything normal about this… business meetings …happy hours…family reunions .. bad internet connections.. broken and dropped calls..  #2020.. good riddance!!!

PSA – Animals are wild.


Just finished a little trip to Cape Town. Wining and dining with a significant amount of walking, talking, visiting people and animals alike.

Saw penguins in abundance and dang are they as cute in person as they ever were on Wild Kingdom!!

Saw chickens.

Saw a couple donkeys.

AND Saw seals as well.  At first was super disappointed because I couldn’t get a good view of them in the water.

Then suddenly one of my friends said, “Hey, the seals are back on the cement behind the restaurant!”

I immediately jump up and run back to where the seal is.  I’m a super cautious person and I know not to get too close to wild animals. So I peek around the corner of the building and there he is.. a passive seal, laying like a giant oil spill behind the fish delivery truck.

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I snap a couple pictures of the lazy seal and start to walk back to our table.  Then lo and behold…on the other side of the lazy seal is a beautiful massive seal sunning on the rocks behind the delivery truck.

I carefully walk past lazy seal who does not even bat an eye.  I get some amazing pictures and now contented, decide to return to my table.

As I turn around, lazy seal is now standing tall on his flippers just staring at me.  Still on the other end of the delivery truck but standing up..and as tall as I am..and just staring at me!!  This photo does NOT do this seal justice!

I realize now there were a multitude of options I could have taken but at the time there was really only one option in my vision.

That option was to return the way I came. His back was too me and if I move slowly.. no loud sounds .. I’d be ok. I mean, he was super nice when I passed him the first time.. what could go wrong.

I slowly approached him (did not cross my mind this might cause an animal to think I was stalking IT!). I get directly to his backside as he is eyeing me over his shoulder.  Suddenly he leaps in the air and rotates to face me (WHO KNEW SEALS COULD LEAP!!!) and barks. His bark may or may not have been worse than his bite but I will never know.

I have experienced fear in my life and even thought I had known terror a time or two.  I was wrong. This day.. with this seal.. I felt for the very first time.. sheer, blind-white terror.  I remember some of the details, but many were restated and even re-enacted by my friends who were with me.

I screamed..  I ran.. I ran blindly.. I fell.. I fell with abandon.. I think I was still running and screaming.. even from a horizontal position.

I finally stood up. Seal was forgotten and apparently gone.  My hands were bleeding.. my shoulder was bleeding.. my forehead was bleeding.  My ring finger on my left hand was no longer aligned top to bottom.  I still felt no pain.  I was fixated on my finger and the random position it was in.

A friend’s friend’s son was like, “That don’t look right!”  I looked at his dad and flatly said, “Put it back.”  He asked, “Uh, what?”  Me: “Put IT back where it was… MY FINGER.. JUST PUT IT back.” He asked if I was sure.. according to others I said yes. He did. I am whole..a little more learned.. and healing nicely I think.

public service announcement: DO NOT PLAY WITH WILD ANIMALS

*no matter how docile they appear!

So tell me what you want what you really really want..


“For in some ways the world was like a shopping centre, and he himself was a doubtful customer, often ineffectual, being talked into buying things he didn’t want, things indeed which nobody in their right mind would want to buy.”
― Margaret Mahy, The Catalogue of the Universe

You can completely engage yourself every weekend by visiting bazaar’s from every country.  So far I have been to the Syrian, Nigerian and French Bazaar.  They share many of the same items from many of the same venders, but each has their own very, very special take on food and set up.