"The stakes are high.
The water's rough.
But this love is ours..."
The first time I met my neighbor, she was working out in the yard. I remember how beautiful the yard looked. So I did what folks do here, they ask how the person manages to get their yard looking so beautiful.
During the conversation she out of the blue told me that her husband would be back next month. "Business?" I asked. The reply was no. Her husband was in Iraq. In one of those moments where people instinctively know that a complete stranger could be trusted, she told me that she didn't talk about it much. Part of her was worried about being alone while her husband was so far away. I told her not to worry. They'd both be fine.
I'm happy to say that he made it back. He's nice. They both are.
I've started thanking people who have come back from Iraq. It's alittle weird because some of these folks are complete strangers. I do it because of a guy I met on one of my trips. He was a Vietnam veteran. He told me, with tears in his eyes, that his return from Vietnam was rocky. People weren't nice to him. It wasn't that they ignored him or were completely oblivious to there being a wa-- I mean a military action in Vietnam. If they had do so, it would have been easier. Nope. After a nightmare of a time in Vietnam, he returned home to complete strangers who hated him for being in the military. Didn't matter if he was drafted or if he volunteered. He was trying so hard not to cry that the next thing I knew he had snapped to attention. Everything but the salute.
He was still waiting for someone to welcome him home.
So when I see someone has come back safe and sound?
I say, "Welcome home."
That's the truth.
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