Updated: Mar 20, 2019
I have often wished that I could share the experience of living on a military base with folks I know will never see or know what it is like to be outside when 'retreat' is observed. I was reminded of that wish the other day when I was leaving the commissary, and just as I stepped outside the door I naturally stopped dead in my tracks and placed my hand over my heart in silence. This might have caused onlookers to be baffled if I had been exiting Wal-mart or the local mall, but here that would never happen. Here, in this moment, I was not alone. In fact, every single person, young and old alike, also stopped and stood in respectful silence as the National Anthem played over the base speaker system and the flag was lowered with great care and honor. Words can never adequately describe the feeling you get when everything stops for one brief moment to outwardly express your allegiance to your country, to show respect for the ideals that became a nation.