Saturday, August 18, 2007

An incident at work

Yesterday was the first day back at school for teachers, a day of welcomes and workshops. It was great to be back and see everyone. It was the usual stuff that teachers hear every year, and work very hard not to zone out during every year. ;) Went to lunch had a good time, though the restaurant really messed up, and we were all late getting back. The boss was very understanding.

At the end of the day we were all released to work in our rooms, as I worked I heard a co-worker make a comment I found a bit upsetting. If you are from Texas you know, that the legislature just passed a law adding "under God" to the Texas pledge. My co-worker said "I'm happy about the change in the pledge". That I don't have a problem with, though I did find it mildly disturbing. What really bothered me was what she said next, "It serves the jerks right for trying to take God out of everything." I was a bit shocked and a bit offended. I very much wanted to confront her, but bit my tongue, she wasn't addressing me and I knew my temper was too high.

Our government is suppose to be a secular government, no state or federal religion so that all religions and cultures feel welcome and included. I very much want to ask how she would feel if the city, state, or federal government added a line asking people to swear on Buddha, Vishnu, or Allah. Most likely she would be deeply offended. It saddens me that so many can not put themselves in other people's shoes and understand where other people are coming from.

I've heard some people say that the God in the pledge is a general god idea. I can say with a fair amount of certainty that outside of the Christian faith the capital "G" god refers specifically to the Christian/Jewish god. Other religions use the specific name of the god they are referring to. I've tried to explain it this way. If you are talking about your own mom, you say or write "Mom", when you talk about all moms it is a lowercase m.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

First Time Camping

Well, summer time is almost over. The family is in need of some adventure. My husband had been wanting to go camping for years, but I had never done it and the prospect of going camping in the Texas heat never held any appeal for me. This year I said, lets go for it. At first we talked about going to a little camp site one town over that he use to go to when he was a kid. Then I remembered stopping to go horseback riding through a canyon in Texas as a break on a road trip to Colorado. We looked online and the scenery was inspiring, so we decided to go 11 hours away to go camping in Palo Duro Canyon.

We left very early in the morning, so we could get there in time for check in and so we could get our new tent set up before dark. We found a site with a good amount of shade. It was hot, but breezy. As long as the breeze was moving it was pretty comfortable. There was supposed to be no rain for the entire time we were there, so of course the second afternoon there was a thunderstorm. We got soaked, the river flooded, the water came within 10 feet of our tent. We had to spend a couple of hours in our tent, but the skies cleared by the evening. It was a good thing we didn't have a camp site deeper in the canyon, because the water crossings flooded. The water was 5 feet over the road. There was a family that had the teenagers at camp and the adults in town, the adults were trapped on the opposite side of the water from the teens for the night. By the next afternoon, you could barely tell that it had rained.

We saw all manner of wildlife, a groundhog, deer and turkey (they walked right into camp many times), cardinals, hawks, spiders, butterflies, etc. And in Don's case, a giant tarantula. I've decided that I can't wait to go camping again. I will post some pictures when I get them uploaded on this computer.