Ohana Sailing Adventure

The Big Easy

Our second major detour en route from Colorado to Florida was New Orleans. Even weeks after Mardi Gras, beads were still visible in the trees and tourists were inebriated before noon.

But we focused our afternoon’s stroll on the beauty of the buildings in the French Quarter, eating beignets, and checking out the waterfront.

  • New Orleans Pharmacy Museum, down the street from the quaintest Walgreen’s our family has seen

The next day we spent at the National World War II Museum, designated by Congress as the official WWII museum of the U.S. The museum covers all theaters of the war with a combination of vintage film footage, artifacts, posted short histories, personal stories, and interactive exhibits.

The most impressive part of the day, though, was the 4-D film Beyond All Boundaries. Narrated by Tom Hanks and with other voices including Gary Sinise, Neil Patrick Harris, James Cromwell, Chris Pine, Brad Pitt – the list goes on and on – the short film is powerfully done with moving props and scenery, vibrating seats, and lighting and sound effects. Although much of the museum elicited strong emotions, the ending of the film trumped them all. A line of servicemen marched across the screen, then only a handful stepped forward, turned around, and saluted their fallen compatriots.

The museum’s website states that “Every day, memories of World War II — its sights and sounds, its terrors and triumphs — disappear.” A restatement of the famous quote:

“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”

George Santayana

Although the girls likely did not fully appreciate the magnitude of what they saw at the museum, we hope that with our schooling and our other planned visits this summer, that they will start to internalize the lessons of the past, and in so doing, help to shape a better future.

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