I go out for a slow ride to reflect on the matters of the mind. I reflect a lot on what's past and what I need to pay attention too. The lesson, History repeats itself. My history is not an exception and my personal success and happiness is tightly coupled to paying attention. With cold, wet air, heavy clouds and sleet it feels like an ideal time to go remind myself how history repeats in war and sleet.
I don't know my way around the 'monument park' in Saint Paul and I didn't read anything before riding the 12 odd miles so I'm exploring. First up is a deck cannon fired first at Pearl Harbor. I was shocked and had to read it a few time to believe my eyes. Minnesota holds the honor of defending the nation before all others and we have the gun on our soil. I could not resist touching it with a little emotion about what it did for us.
Think about the first salvo and what it meant to us. This iron, cast in peace, used in war, takes Japanese lives so we can maintain our American lives and is almost unknown to 294,873 people in Saint Paul. The Spanish American War Memorial Tree is also unknown and it's just across the river but the guns used for WWII? Below are some close ups.
Below is the Firefighter memorial. I believe this is the statue that used to be next to the luggage claim at the Saint Paul International Airport (claim 6) but that's a memory and the plaques didn't say.
Below: Each monolith has a story about a Medal of honor given out. I read one but the cold and light freezing rain and me losing daylight; I had to move on. This is also a water feature so winter is a bad time to reflect seeing how the reflections don't mirror as designed.
Etched by year to emphasize the escalation and controversy. I read the first name and the last name and a few in between. It's somber reading names of people in this way. The cold, clouds and rain didn't go unnoticed about this time.
Below: The alphabetized book used to locate those on the wall. This could have been a very important page for my family but we are grateful it is not.
Below: Woman's Suffrage (right of women to vote) memorial displays a timeline of the key women of the movement. Notice it does not get enough attention to get shoveled by the state but it's not alone.
The edges of this monolith are embossed with scene of mans struggles in war.