IN A FEW HOURS, the Traveling Vietnam Memorial Wall arrives in Faribault.
I am prepping. And so are others.
Around noon, a contingent of bikers, motorists and others swept past my Willow Street home en route to the Steele County Fairgrounds in Owatonna. There the group will gather for a 3 p.m. departure. The entourage will travel through Owatonna, Medford and into Faribault, ending at the wall construction site, the Rice County Fairgrounds.
Here at my home, three flags are staked in the boulevard, a sight that prompted the Faribault group to honk horns and wave as they passed by.
A basket of American flags sits inside my front door, awaiting kids I expect here for the processional. I’ve dug out the sidewalk chalk to keep them busy while waiting. Ice cream treats are stashed in the freezer. Water bottles are cooling in the fridge.
I’ve swiped my husband’s American flag t-shirt from his dresser drawer.
Shortly before invited friends, and maybe others, arrive, I’ll spray for mosquitoes.
Today’s processional promises to be a memorable and moving experience, especially for those of us old enough to remember Vietnam. I expect the kids to learn something today about this chapter in America’s history.
Faribault, I hope you will show your honor and respect by lining the processional route and by showcasing your patriotism with American flags.
Copyright 2016 Audrey Kletscher Helbling