Déjà vu All Over Again

29 JC Capitol up the hillMay 29, 2016 Linda Burton posting from Jefferson City, Missouri – “What are your plans for Memorial Day?” people start asking early in the month of May. April showers have come and gone and here in this heat the May flowers hit their high mark in April. By Memorial Day school is out and everyone is ready for summer’s change of pace. I don’t have one of those big barge boats for floating around DeGray Lake. My yard isn’t landscaped the way I want it yet, 25 flagsnor my screen porch built, for lazy hammock naps or evening cookouts and a crowd. “I had a great Memorial Day in 2013,” I told friend Janice. “I was in Jefferson City on the Journey then. Concerts all afternoon, morning ceremonies at the National Cemetery, barbecue at the end of the day; it was great! And Jefferson City is a true All-American town, with hanging flower baskets and benches, and that gorgeous capitol, and the Missouri River, so cozy and so historical.” I went on, extolling the virtues of such a charming place, and such friendly people, when the idea struck. I’m not THAT far from Jefferson City; Missouri is just the next state north, well heck, I can do that again! And so I did.

First I emailed Bill Stine, who performed with the Monticello Singers on Memorial Day 2013. He assured me the group was performing at 3 PM in the Capitol, just as before, and warmly invited me to please come again. Not long after I received an email from Paul Hinman, Conductor of the Jefferson City Community Symphonic Band; he’d heard I might be coming and invited me to their concert at First Christian Church at 1 PM. Online I found information about the special ceremony at the Jefferson City National Cemetery at 10:30 AM. It all fit; déjà vu was taking shape, everything lining up, smooth as silk.

I planned the route, (a good chance to see parts of northern Arkansas I haven’t explored yet). I made the reservation (asking for a room facing the capitol, just like before). I dusted off the suitcase and started to pack. Load the car, and go. Veer left at Little Rock, the Arkansas River 29 buffalo river signis all laked up there; green hills and bluffs. Leave I-40 and head north through a wilder landscape; signs for Grinders Ferry and the Buffalo National River (one of the few undammed rivers left in the 29 Welcome to Missouricountry); I’m in the Ozark Mountains. Keep going north towards Branson; Missouri welcomed me with a cheerful sign of blue, and gold. Almost 9 hours and exactly 432 miles from home, I was there, in a room facing the capitol just up the hill; hyped and happy and ready to memorialize another extra-special day in one of my favorite capital cities.

Memorial Day 2013 http://capitalcitiesusa.org/?p=9516#more-9516