40 years ago last night! Can it be possible? How is it that I cannot remember what the weather was like a month ago, much less a year ago and yet I can remember so clearly other events from so very long ago?
The moon was full that night. My BFF Sharon and I had graduated the month before and were out cruisin' the town in my dad's 1961 Dodge Pioneer and had just done the turn through Proffitt's Drive Inn. We were just looking up to our right at the moon and they announced the landing on the radio! Drove Sharon quickly home, pulled into the driveway and ran into the house .. there was my dad, standing in front of the tv (that's how you could tell something incredibly important was on .. he stood in front of the tv .. I find myself doing that today!) .. and was just in time to see that foot hit the surface of the moon! Amazing that I can see that so clearly and feel that incredible wave of awe after so many years.
To this day, when I go outside at night .. any night .. I immediately look to the stars and just stare. Would I go to the moon if offered a space trip? In a heart beat!
And then the death of Walter Cronkite .. and all the other memories are as clear as day too. Where I was when Kennedy was shot (in phys. ed) . .. where I was when his death was announced (they actually brought tv's into each of the classrooms .. I was in 8th grade Math II). And then I was home sick with the tv on when Ruby shot Oswald and I saw it live and remember yelling & yelling for my mother to get in the living room (we didn't see shootings on tv then, much less see 'death with blood' in tv shows. From then through Vietnam, Watergate, race riots here at home, Chicago Democratic Convention, the Iran Hostage Crisis, watching the news of Cronkite's passing, I've relived a great deal of America's most turbulent years all over again .. and find each memory that I'd had of each event still so incredibly clear.
"... And that's the way it is, Tuesday July 21, 2009" when I don't remember what was on tv last night.