August 8, 1913 – 100 years ago today – my ancestor Marsilio, 17 years old, traveling alone and speaking no English, arrives from Italy. He sets foot in America after 16 days crossing the Atlantic on the steamship “RE D’ITALIA” from Genoa with 2,000 Italian immigrants. On August 8, 1913, he sees the Statue of Liberty for the first time in New York Harbor, and begins his adventure to become a citizen of the United States.
I am proud to be one of Marsilio’s many American descendants here today…
As the sculptor devotes himself to wood and stone, I would devote myself to my soul. – Toyohiko Kagawa, 1888-1960.
Thank you to all who write on xanga, and who visit here…
July 1, 1863
150 years ago today, began the Battle of Gettysburg, the bloodiest battle in US history with over 51,000 American casualties. It lasted three days and ended the Confederate invasion of the Northern states in the American Civil War.
This weekend, we saw a reenactment by over 10,000 semi-professional actors at a farm near Gettysburg in Pennsylvania. They travel here from all over the country. They portray infantry, mounted horse cavalry, and artillery regiments. They put on authentic Union and Confederate uniforms, and carry replica weapons. In the final attack, Pickett’s Charge, the Union army emerges victorious as the beaten Confederates retreat to their lines, their invasion broken. The Union is saved.
I am proud of my state. We endured the tragedy of Newtown, which is about 1/2 hour from our home. Now we have acted. Our legislature today passes the toughest gun control laws in the USA. These new laws respect lawful gun owners rights, while removing many of the loopholes that allowed the Newtown tragedy to take place. And this new law passes with broad bipartisan support. Yes, both Republicans and Democrats collaborated together.
I am proud of my state of Connecticut, and I encourage the other 49 states to look how we do things here!
I am looking forward to a spiritual getaway this weekend. This retreat is being held at a monastery in a forest at the edge of our town in central Connecticut. I love going there for the peace I feel in this natural setting, and for the spiritual insights I receive from talented presenters, and with friendly fellow retreatants.
The theme – a season of promise – intrigues me. I am ready for a new season, and I am open to relook at promise in my life – what I have to give, and where I have to grow.
And yes, I will be home in time to cheer the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl XLVII!