Road Trip Day #4

On Day #4 we started out in Oklahoma. Per recommendation of Dad and Karen we stopped in Oklahoma City to visit the Alfred P. Murrah Memorial. I had vaguely heard of the Oklahoma City Bombing before, but really didn't know much about it. Afterall, I was only 7 when it
happened, and really my memory doesn't go back that far.
The attack happened on April 19, 1995 and was an act by a former U.S. Army soldier. He was angry at the government for the handling of certain things and took it out on this Federal building by putting together 7,000 lbs. of explosives. He wanted to send a message. His 'message' killed 168 people, 19 of which were children ranging from 3 months to 6 years old.
I can't imagine what could ever possess a human being to do such a thing to another human being, to children. I can only hope that he wasn't sane. And that people like that are few, and are hopefully stopped before they do similar acts of evil.

The memorial built to remember the victims of the bombing is beautiful. It is very thought provoking, serene and peaceful.
(Photo from "Travel & Photography" by Jim Nix)
The memorial has two large 'gates' that enclose a reflecting pool. One gate has 9:01 engraved at the top, and the other has 9:03, the reflecting pool is inbetween them to signify the time of the bombing.
The field of chairs is to symbolize the 168 empty chairs around people's dinner tables, that now sit empty. 19 of them are smaller for the 19 children that were killed.
The tree I photographed up above is actually called the Survivor Tree because it survived the explosion as well as the fires that followed. It has been left in the exact same place, and as it blossoms every spring it is meant to encourage young people in the city that growth is still possible, and that their future is still bright.
Being at the Memorial, walking along the sidewalks and reading the names of the lives lost was a very sobering experience. But it made me very grateful for some things. It made me grateful for my family. It made me grateful for the gospel. It made me grateful for people that pull together to lift each other up. It made me happy to know that, no matter how many people are out there that have hatred in their hearts; for every 1 with hatred, there are at least 100 with love instead of hate. Good truly does outweigh bad. People are mostly good, kind and encouraging, and that is a comfort to me, to know that most people still have the light of Christ, and if we are hurt by an act comitted by someone who has lost that light, that those of us with it still intact will pull together, to raise one another up in faith and love. So, even though I left with a prayer in my heart for all the people affected by the bombing, I also left with a renewed gratitude for my many blessings.
OKAY...so. I am going to kind of switch directions now. I apologize if that was a bit dramatic, but, as I have said several times before, this is my journal, so I may be a bit too open for the public eye sometimes. If that is the case with this entry.....sorry. :/
After visiting the memorial we headed to a "must-see" which is the Bricktown District, and the Bricktown Canal.
There is a lot of shopping and restaurants here, and they all surround a canal with several bridges and water taxis. The weather was beautiful and so was the scenery. Topher and I both were smitten with the city and esp. this area. It was so fun and had a bit of southern charm, we really loved just strolling up and down the sidewalks, eating frozen yogurt and enjoying the sunshine.
So while we were walking along the canal, there were some ducks. Well, Grace decided she wanted to see these ducks. She walked up to the water's edge and in her most sing-songy doting voice said "Come hewe duckies. I won huwt you. Come heeee-ewwe."
When the ducks didn't come, she continued "Duckies....come hee-ewee! Come hewe...now, or I wiw pank yo butt. If you come hewe, I be nice and just pet you, come hewe!" I should note, that while she was bossing the ducks around threatening spanked bottoms, she had her hands on her hips in the most perfect 'bossy mommy' pose I have ever seen. It was hilarious, to say the least. I was laughing so hard listening to my Gracey talk in this sweet, loving mommy-esque voice, and then threatening spankings, to DUCKS no less! Hah! That girl cracks me up so much.
I also wanted to mention, Oklahoma is where Topher's Dad served his mission, so we wanted to give a 'shout out!' to Curtis and say that we thoroughly enjoyed Oklahoma City! It was a really endearing and charming city and we very much want to go back someday. Only, next time maybe we could have Curtis be our personal tour guide? :) That would probably make the visit even better.
We set off from Oklahoma City a bit after the Canal and continued on through Arkansas, (which was also beautiful) and stopped in West Memphis, AK. Originally we had thought we'd made it to Tennessee for the evening but soon realized that West Memphis is actually on the West side of the Mississippi river, and until we crossed over to the East side of the River, we were officially in Arkansas. :) So we stayed the night there and planned to cross the Mississippi the next morning and explore Memphis.
Check back tomorrow for an update on Day #5- Graceland!
Thanks for checking in! We love and miss our families so so much! I esp. am missing my family and just playing games and eating dinner together. I miss you family! You are all in my prayers each night and I hope you are all well.
Mileage Today: 527 Miles
Total Mileage: 1,501 Miles


Allie said...

Did you guys happen to get a hamburger from "Lot a Burger" while in New mexico my kids love to eat there when we are in Farmington NM

Alan J. said...

Sounds like you guys are having lots of fun! Grace cracks me up - did you not get her any bread to encourage the duckies to come closer? And i hope you didn't eat all that FroYo! ;)

Lady of the Rings said...

Very interesting, bug. I never knew there was so much to see in Ok city. Very pretty pictures. Gracey will make a good mommy! I made it to Emily's this morning. Can't wait to see you all. love you lots.

Rachel's Mommy said...

Good job going to the must-sees! And I enjoyed your deep thoughts--are you sure this isn't your dad's running blog?? Grace is hiLARious!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I love getting my Gracey fix every day via your fun stories. Thank you!

Super Daysh said...

Sounds like a fun day!! I'm glad that Grace threatens to spank ducks and not just Ellie. ;) Be safe and have fun- keep the updates coming. :)

Thoughtful Runner said...

Glad you enjoyed Oklahoma City. It was a city that surprised us, as well. We hadn't gone with great expectations (other than the race got excellent reviews), but ended up thoroughly enjoying the city for a couple of days - and totally agree with your assessment of the Memorial and Museum. Also very glad to hear that the ducks survived Gracey!
South Carolina is getting closer (despite you spending the night in AK - Alaska!)

Laurenkri said...

Your stories are too cute. I love that you are on a road trip! Just an fyi -- you have a link to my old blog which is now owned by a Polish girl who is not actually me (sad). But I have a newish blog at waxinganalogous dot blogspot dot com.

I love you!