Thursday, October 23, 2008

In Maryland

I'm on the verge of DC right now. Two days ago I was in Rhode island, I went out to Cape Cod, and I went to Plymouth, to see the Mayflower 2.
Speaking of Plymouth, I totally understand a lot more about why they landed there. I will explain. Initially, the Pilgrims (which I am learning did not call themselves that, but that's the word I've got) met up with the coast somewhere near or at Cape Cod, and they followed the cape around the corner, to protected waters. (or so I am lead to believe) So they landed at Provincetown. (Thats a link to a map, so open it up to get an idea of the area)
Then they discovered that Cape Cod is a barren sandy spit, and there isn't any water there, and not much grows there. Not a good spot for a settlement. So they head for the mainland, and I would imagine that they head along the inside of the cape, slowly going along the shoreline, until they ran into the first water. There is a nice little stream right next to Plymouth, and its (as far as I could see) the first water in that direction. Otherwise, had they just crossed the bay directly, they would of had a good chance at hitting the area north more (like Boston).
Anyways, I thought it was neat to see the landscape there.
Then I drove to Altoona Pennsylvania, where Clare and Joe live (friends from Bellingham) and saw a lot of wonderful colors of the autumn leaves and such. Then today (Thursday) I drove from Altoona to the DC area, stopping at Gettysburg.
Gettysburg is a name from history... Lets see, what happened there? Some sort of address, I believe, about the freedom of all peoples, four score and seven years ago...
but also a great and terrible battle happened there. The fields that still stand clear leading up to a hill where the Union troops held ground during the confederate attacks. I can understand why the union retreated up to the hill, when attacked, because its a wonderful place to see a commanding view of the area, and to have a nice easy shot down at anyone trying to kill you. Many people died there, and I could feel it a little in the wind. The sun was shining brightly, the torch on a memorial burning, (the eternal flame) but the huge fields (to the south of the hill, where I don't think much of the battle was fought, in actuality) made me think of the sorrow and loss that happened there. Something about a large plot of land devoted to open air alone in this busy contryside makes me feel a little empty inside. From there I drove on through the brick town of Gettysburg, where the red bricks, like the color of dried blood, try to emphasize the noble spirit of the nation, and the red leaves fallen on the ground remind me of the war we seem to always be involved in. Ah, the spirit of patriotism really comes out in the fall.
But I will be heading further south, into warmer climates.
Tomorrow I'll go into DC for the day.

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