On the west side of Lincoln, I stood on a country road looking out over the vast stretches of rolling farmland, surveying the beautiful green, yellow, and brown hues of the corn at near harvest. In the distance stood an old silo, like a sentry at its post, watching over the morning calm of the fields. The clouds in the overcast sky were giving way to blue above.
Awhile back I visited the dermatologist due to a sore spot that would not heal. The doctor put the probability at fifty-fifty for a mild skin cancer diagnosis and conducted the necessary lab work to confirm his suspicion. Then he prescribed a medication that helps the body naturally produce interferon, which would have heightened my own body’s defense systems.
Awhile back I bought an old antiquated pickaxe. It's a substantial piece of hardware. Whenever a shovel couldn't get the job done, I broke out that old pickaxe. Eventually the handle gave way, and it sat for a long time in my garage. I recently took it to the local hardware store, and the recommendation was to move on, assign it to a place on the man cave wall, and buy a new one!
I recently traveled to Cairo for meetings with Egypt’s president and other prominent government and religious leaders. As my plane approached the country, I watched as the Mediterranean Sea touched the shore of the ancient land.
When two of my daughters were very little, my wife and I enrolled them in preschool. I remember quite clearly the first day of class. We parked in the school driveway, helped our children out of the car, and then watched them walk together hand in hand toward the building. Scared and hesitant, they moved away from us slowly, inch by inch, nearing the school’s front door.
While visiting with my family on the front porch of my home this week, I heard heartwarming music coming from inside. I abruptly left the conversation, drawn by that dignified, complex melody, which signifies history, strength, and values. It was our national anthem. Another American had won Olympic gold. I had to see it.
I recently met a member of our military at Walter Reed Hospital near Washington, D.C. who had suffered severe wounds fighting for our country. His trauma was so bad that he had been in the hospital for years, having been revived several times in the aftermath of his initial injuries. He endured a coma for so long the doctors told his wife there was nothing more they could do.
In one of my past town hall meetings, an elderly woman sat quietly in the front until the audience had asked most of their questions. She raised her hand, and as she began to ask her question, it became clear to me that she was really afraid. Something she heard or read had frightened her. She asked me if her social security was safe. Clearly she depended on social security for her livelihood.
I recently read a news story about a mother who dashed into a store late at night, leaving her car engine running and her two young children sleeping in the back seat. Although this was an imprudent decision, neither she nor her children deserved what happened next.
In an unusual turn of events for a person my age, I recently bested two much younger guys in a two on two pickup basketball game. Afterward, my opponents introduced themselves. They not only impressed me with their athletic skills as early high schoolers, but more importantly they impressed me with their conversational ease.