It's Flag Day in the USA, a day to fly the flag and be particularly patriotic. The day commemorates the signing of the Flag Resolution of 1777: “Resolved, That the flag of the United States be thirteen stripes, alternate red and white; that the union be thirteen stars, white in a blue field, representing a new Constellation.”
Some non-American folks we've met, make fun of Americans because of our fierce patriotism. I'm not sure why more folks aren't patriotic about their countries, but for sure, we Americans are. We take their jibes and jests in stride because we're definitely sentimental when it comes to the good old US of A. No amount of kidding will change that.
We still get lumps in our throats when we stand to sing the National Anthem... “Oh, say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave?” (lump in throat occurs here). As much as we love traveling, there's always a kind of sweet feeling when we arrive back in the States and step on home turf after a long period away.
Probably the most poignant moment on Nine of Cups was sailing through New York Harbor past the Statue of Liberty just after 9-11. The Twin Towers were conspicuous by their absence, the smoldering remnants at Ground Zero, a painful reminder of the events which had occurred only a couple of weeks prior.
We spent Flag Day 2012 at Mount Rushmore National Monument when, only by chance, we had the opportunity and privilege to witness 113 people from around the world become U.S. Citizens. What an exciting and emotional day for them and for their enthusiastic audience.
Part of flag etiquette on a boat is to hoist the flag of the host nation on our starboard flag halyard when we arrive in a new country. It remains flying while we're there. Our American flag always flies aft on the starboard stay. The wind and weather play havoc with the flag and many times, the tattered stripes get clipped off and the fly end restitched over and over again until the stripes are nearly gone.
My father was a veteran of WWII and my Mom was presented with an American flag at graveside when he was buried. We have that flag aboard and though it's huge, it gets a workout on US national holidays, no matter where we are.