• Kat

Beaches and Cemeteries

I haven't posted in a few weeks - things have been busy. My son, who is 16, has

his first job. He will be working at a camp and is away for seven weeks. I have so many conflicting emotions! I think this is a great choice for his first job - he is working outdoors and with people which should go really well for him. But he has never been away for so long and it really signals that he is growing up. So I am glad and proud and want to cry -

all at once.

Visiting the D-day beaches in Normandy also filled me with conflicting emotions. We visited the two American beaches - Omaha and Utah. At Utah the landing went well, but at Omaha things were much more difficult. The beaches can be very sad and at the same time they are beautiful beaches. I had planned to spend a lot of time walking and building sand castles. Unfortunately it was pretty chilly so I only built a small token sand castle on Utah beach. I avoided the museums - there are quite a few small museums in the area but I knew that visiting them could be overwhelming for me.

This sculpture - Les Braves - The Braves - stands at the center of Omaha beach. A nearby sign explains the three elements. There are the Wings of Fraternity and the Wings of Hope. The center element is Rise, Freedom! It is a superb visual expression of these concepts designed by sculptor Anilore Banon. I particularly like that there are Wings of Hope on this beach.

We also visited the Normandy American cemetery which is on a cliff above Omaha beach. There are over 9,000 graves and a Wall of the Missing with 1557 names. A lot of people were visiting on this lovely sunny day. It was peaceful and joyful which was okay but I prefer my memories of our first visit from several years before. My husband and I agree that it must have been early in the morning because the cemetery was almost empty. There was a small wreath laying ceremony in the distance. We watched and at the end of the ceremony a bugler played Taps. The notes were clear and haunting.

"All is well. Safely rest. God is nigh."

#France #LesBraves #OmahaBeach #Normandy #Dday #beach

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