Celebrating This Amazing Country

 
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Photo Credit: Flickr user Wally Gobetz.

What a remarkable country we have! It is filled with sites of natural beauty, monuments to heroes, paintings, sculptures, museums to honor our past, and institutions that are a tribute to our heritage and unique experiment in government.

Each of us has our favorites, those encounters that have touched us profoundly, changed our outlooks, and expanded our knowledge and appreciation of this country. One place that comes to my mind is the Korean War Veterans Memorial, pictured above (close-ups from the same photographer here and here). Out of all the war memorials in Washington, DC, it’s penetrated my soul with the tragedy of warfare and death like no other. Its grittiness still fills me with sadness and reminds me how fragile life can be.

The National Gallery of Art — also in Washington, DC — is another personal favorite and a place of great beauty. Its collection offers art of every kind from many genres and periods. I’ve only visited a fraction of the galleries, but that’s only because the collection is so substantial. It is, truly, a joy to visit.

Finally, I will forever be in love with Bryce Canyon National Park in Utah. It is one of the most beautiful natural settings that I have ever seen. Its colors and formations are breathtaking.

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Photo Credit: Flickr user Moyan Brenn.

What are your favorite places, monuments, museums, galleries, memorials in this country? Why do they move you so?

There are 55 comments.

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  1. RushBabe49 Thatcher
    RushBabe49
    @RushBabe49

    We spent most of our morning in DC in 2012 in the Library of Congress.  The building is awe-inspiring.

    Thanks for the idea-I feel a big post coming for my own personal blog at RushBabe49.com.

    • #1
  2. TKC1101 Inactive
    TKC1101
    @TKC1101

    Standing on the shore of Jackson Lake, staring at the Grand Tetons as the sun sets.

    Sunrise over Haleakalah crater on Maui.

    Late morning in Monument Valley.

    Driving the Blue Ridge Parkway in spring with Copland  playing at volume.

    Dinner in the Carnelian Room , top of the BA Tower in SF with a clear night, overlooking the city, bay and bridges,

    Outside the US

    The stars over Ayres Rock in the middle of the outback

    • #2
  3. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    TKC1101: The stars over Ayres Rock in the middle of the outback

    Oh my gosh, isn’t it awesome?! Uluru, isn’t it? Thanks for all the input. They sound fabulous.

    • #3
  4. TKC1101 Inactive
    TKC1101
    @TKC1101

    Susan Quinn: They sound fabulous.

    I could not narrow it down any further. I grew up with Atlantic Ocean sunrises and now live with Pacific Ocean sunsets.  All glorious and life affirming.

    • #4
  5. livingthehighlife Inactive
    livingthehighlife
    @livingthehighlife

    Lost in the majestic mountains are thousands of small spring fed creeks, each with it’s own unique cycle of life.

    I love to explore and fish these small creeks, marveling at the perfect symmetry between fish, insects, plants, water and air.

    Ò IMG_0128

    • #5
  6. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    livingthehighlife: I love to explore and fish these small creeks, marveling at the perfect symmetry between fish, insects, plants, water and air.

    Gorgeous. I swear I could hear the water flowing over the rocks. Thanks you, living.

    • #6
  7. jpark Member
    jpark
    @jpark

    In the summer in DC, the Marine Corps Commandant’s Own and the Silent Drill Platoon perform at Iwo Jima Memorial (and the Marine Barracks, on another night). That is a remarkable tribute to the Corps and our country.

    At the Smithsonian, the Freer is a sleeper, but rewarding.

    Glacier National Park

    Walking back to my car in Montgomery, AL, as sunset neared and looking back to the west through the State Capitol.

    Sunset over Lake Lanier in Gainesville, GA

    • #7
  8. Paul Dougherty Member
    Paul Dougherty
    @PaulDougherty

    076

    • #8
  9. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Paul Dougherty:076

    Could you share where this is, Paul?

    • #9
  10. Paul Dougherty Member
    Paul Dougherty
    @PaulDougherty

    Susan Quinn:

    Paul Dougherty:076

    Could you share where this is, Paul?

    This is about 120 miles northeast of Anchorage on the Glenn Hwy looking south east. Behind those mountains are vast ice fields. Beyond those is the Prince William Sound. Zero people in between.

    • #10
  11. Paul Dougherty Member
    Paul Dougherty
    @PaulDougherty

    I used to be a parts expediter for a construction company in high school.  This company had a project north of Anchorage along the Alaska/Canada border about 380 miles one way, to which I made numerous round trips. In the middle of summer, with clear skies there is about fourteen hours of sun shine, four hours of sunset/sunrise with alpenglow coloring, and six hours of grey dusk. The Glenn Hwy was very  magical for me.

    • #11
  12. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Paul Dougherty:I used to be a parts expediter for a construction company in high school. This company had a project north of Anchorage along the Alaska/Canada border about 380 miles one way, to which I made numerous round trips. In the middle of summer, with clear skies there is about fourteen hours of sun shine, four hours of sunset/sunrise with alpenglow coloring, and six hours of grey dusk. The Glenn Hwy was very magical for me.

    I’m glad you weren’t one of those drivers in the winter! I close my eyes every time I watch the drivers on TV who challenge the ice roads to get to their destinations. And I watch several TV “reality” shows on Alaska. It can be quite the life. Can I assume from your headgear that you still live there? Amidst civilization?

    • #12
  13. Paul Dougherty Member
    Paul Dougherty
    @PaulDougherty

    Susan Quinn:

    Paul Dougherty:I used to be a parts expediter for a construction company in high school. This company had a project north of Anchorage along the Alaska/Canada border about 380 miles one way, to which I made numerous round trips. In the middle of summer, with clear skies there is about fourteen hours of sun shine, four hours of sunset/sunrise with alpenglow coloring, and six hours of grey dusk. The Glenn Hwy was very magical for me.

    I’m glad you weren’t one of those drivers in the winter! I close my eyes every time I watch the drivers on TV who challenge the ice roads to get to their destinations. And I watch several TV “reality” shows on Alaska. It can be quite the life. Can I assume from your headgear that you still live there? Amidst civilization?

    I do live in Anchorage. My avatar is the result of a little snowshoe hike I took in a wooded area around noon in Anchorage. Despite the sun, the temperature was around -15f. The hat effectively protected my baldness. Sporty and effective. Coincidently, my brother is a truck driver who works on the north slope building ice roads in tthe winter. He does so in the absence of dramatic music, though.

    • #13
  14. livingthehighlife Inactive
    livingthehighlife
    @livingthehighlife

    Paul Dougherty: Zero people in between.

    That makes it perfect!

    ;-)

    • #14
  15. EJHill Podcaster
    EJHill
    @EJHill

    To quote an old country song, the best view is from my front porch looking in.

    • #15
  16. drlorentz Member
    drlorentz
    @drlorentz

    Zion Canyon:

    IMG_0006

    Grand Canyon, North Rim:

    IMG_0302

    Joshua Tree (with desert bighorn sheep):

    IMG_0310

    • #16
  17. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    EJHill:To quote an old country song, the best view is from my front porch looking in.

    Is that looking inside yourself or into your house–you’re one of those CA folks aren’t you?  ;>)

    • #17
  18. Trink Coolidge
    Trink
    @Trink

    Susan  . . . what an uplifting post.   I love your ability to turn outward, to engage the world of ideas and experience, creating a place we can convene to nod in agreement or share our unique perspectives.

    • #18
  19. RushBabe49 Thatcher
    RushBabe49
    @RushBabe49

    Mountain

    Puget Sound and Mount Rainier.  Post on my blog.

    • #19
  20. drlorentz Member
    drlorentz
    @drlorentz

    RushBabe49: Post on my blog.

    Great pics on your blog! I see you know how to get to Carnegie Hall (practice, practice, practice).

    • #20
  21. EJHill Podcaster
    EJHill
    @EJHill

    Susan Quinn: Is that looking inside yourself or into your house–you’re one of those CA folks aren’t you? ;>)

    At last count I think I’ve been to 44 of the 58  50 States and no place is better than home with my family.

    I’ve lived and worked in other places but I always returned home. It’s not a spectacular town. The steel mills have vanished and with them most of the really good paying jobs. It has one major tourist destination and the rest is highly forgettable. But this is where my parents lived, loved and died and it will be the same for me.

    One child has already flown the coup for greener pastures and the others will, too, in their own time.

    Not exactly Chamber of Commerce stuff, I know. But you have to be from somewhere.

    • #21
  22. aardo vozz Member
    aardo vozz
    @aardovozz

    1.Zion,Bryce,and Arches national parks in Utah

    2. Just about any lake in Minnesota(with a special nod to sunrises on Lake Superior in early spring)

    3. Sunsets at the Grand Canyon

    4. Enjoying the scenery while driving along the Pacific Coast Highway.

    5. Many,many others

    (…runs off to listen to “Me and You and a Dog Named Boo” a few times:))

    • #22
  23. Trink Coolidge
    Trink
    @Trink

    Susan,  like you, I find the war monuments so profoundly moving.  Walking The Gettysburg Battlefield terrain . .  touching the Vietnam War Memorial  . . and knowing that my father is eternally honored in the WWII memorial.  He led a gun platoon onto Omaha Beach on D- Day.

    Screen Shot 2016-04-01 at 8.01.59 AM

    Dad on the right.

    Screen Shot 2016-04-01 at 8.05.02 AM

    • #23
  24. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    drlorentz:

    RushBabe49: Post on my blog.

    Great pics on your blog! I see you know how to get to Carnegie Hall (practice, practice, practice).

    They are gorgeous, aren’t they? Beautiful post, RB49. I especially enjoyed your smiling face! And drlorentz, I loved your photos, too! Don’t you think that Joshua Tree in particular has a certain mystical quality? I also love the fact that many of us have been to similar places–another way we are connected. Thanks!

    • #24
  25. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    EJHill: I’ve lived and worked in other places but I always returned home. It’s not a spectacular town. The steel mills have vanished and with them most of the really good paying jobs. It has one major tourist destination and the rest is highly forgettable. But this is where my parents lived, loved and died and it will be the same for me.

    It sounds perfect to me. I don’t have that kind of home, a place that draws me back, so I envy you that. Thanks for elaborating, EH. Your comment shows that monuments appear in many different forms.

    • #25
  26. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    aardo vozz: 4. Enjoying the scenery while driving along the Pacific Coast Highway.

    One of my favorites, too. Breathtaking. Although the others are, too. Love your choice of music!

    • #26
  27. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Trink: Susan, like you, I find the war monuments so profoundly moving. Walking The Gettysburg Battlefield terrain . . touching the Vietnam War Memorial . . and knowing that my father is eternally honored in the WWII memorial. He led a gun platoon onto Omaha Beach on D- Day.

    A deep bow to your dad. And thank you for your testimony.

    • #27
  28. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Paul Dougherty: Coincidently, my brother is a truck driver who works on the north slope building ice roads in tthe winter. He does so in the absence of dramatic music, though.

    I’ll say an extra prayer for him, Paul. Tough work, that is!

    • #28
  29. RushBabe49 Thatcher
    RushBabe49
    @RushBabe49

    DRL and Susan, basic blog-reader behavior:

    Press the “like” button.

    Leave a comment.

    I get stats on an ongoing basis, and simply viewing the post does not tell me that you were there.  I appreciate your comments here-that post took nearly two hours to finish.

    Thanks!

    • #29
  30. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    RushBabe49:DRL and Susan, basic blog-reader behavior:

    Press the “like” button.

    It doesn’t let me comment without signing in. Don’t have that with WordPress. Sorry

    • #30

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