Woo hoo! I voted yesterday. Ballot arrived in the mail by the afternoon I had it filled out and dropped off at the Dawson County Court House. I have been taught that voting is a sacred rite as Americans. Grandparents and parents believed voting was something everyone should do. To not vote is almost a sin. So it is done. To people who say, well, my vote doesn't change anything, I say one vote and one vote and one vote makes a huge difference. You can't complain if you do not vote and if we are going to make a difference in our lives in this country we must vote!! What a privilege! I think of how fortunate I am that I can vote and not worry about getting accosted in any way.
The tragedy is that there are places in this country where people are trying to prevent others from voting. I simply cannot believe that we don't want to encourage everyone to vote. It is our right and it is a privilege. Good things happen when we exercise our rights as American citizens.
Memorial Day was spent first at the Black Hills National Cemetery near Sturgis. I have two uncles and my Anderson grandparents buried there. Fortunately I got there a little early as the crowd later was huge and backed up to the interstate exit. Every grave had a small flag and personnel from Ellsworth Air Force Base were there to help you find the graves you wanted. I walked and walked and walked but eventually found them all. The grounds are beautiful. The wind was horrific. I stood near the honor guard from the American Legion in Ft Pierre. These older gentlemen were nearly knocked off their feet by the wind and the heavy polls they were carrying.
Then it was on to the Chapel in the Hills at Rapid City where I will be spending about 2 weeks leading an evening worship service. Last night was definitely a shake-down run. One hymn tune neither the organist nor I knew so it was on to plan B. Folks were understanding and it was fine.
This morning the calves of my legs ached -- everything here is uphill! And I am not used to that.
The stave church was completed in 1969 and is considered an outdoor ministry from the ELCA in South Dakota. They have some delightful Norwegian extras. I met Ole and Lena this morning, yah! sure, you betcha'! And walked a meditation path behind the church which leads up into the hills in the back.