Ideas and topics galore
For the past couple years since I have been writing a column or editorial every week.I often find myself thinking about topics or ideas for the column with everything I read, listen to or do. Often topics just fit and I know exactly what I can use and how I want to write it, but other times I struggle with how to write the column and if I have enough information on a subject so our readers can make sense of what I write.
I seldom think of the large number of people who read the column and comment on it regularly. This week there has been a wide variety of ideas that have floated in and out of my mind and rather than just select one I decided to write about a few.
In the Salt Lake Tribune last Thursday there appeared a short article about our military troops who are being hospitalized as a result of combat-related injuries. There was a bill passed last week that said the army could no longer charge those troops $8.10 a day for food. The practice of charging hospitalized soldiers been apparently been in effect since 1958 and the rationale for the charge was that wounded patients should reimburse the government for a subsistence they receive in their paychecks to cover meals.
A quote from one of our representatives said that the troops were insulted by the charges. I have a few other thoughts besides insulted. How about ridiculous?
And then Saturday I heard a report that President Bush wants to force Cuba to change its political stand and be a more democratic neighbor. Although I certainly feel that communism is not a political party that is healthy for a country I just wish Bush would begin working with the United Nations instead of finding it necessary to fix all the woes of the world. I am very patriotic and support our troops for their commitment and dedication but I feel that our country, and particularly Bush, thinks that every answer comes through violence and force. With our arrogant attitude "that we will show you and take over your country" is it no wonder we find it difficult to negotiate and work with other world leaders?
Enough about my world views. As I bring things back home I want to recognize the incredible work by Joyce Daniels and the large committee that successfully hosted the emergency preparedness fair last Thursday. Hundreds of people flowed through the stations and information booths at the fair. There attendees were given tips and material on how to be better prepared in case of an emergency or a natural disaster.
It took a lot of organization and pre-planning to pull off the event and I feel these activities help people think ahead and beyond their day to day routines. As a result of this committee and the information I learned Thursday I know that I am a lot more prepared and aware than I was a couple months ago. The old thinking that disasters only happen in other countries or other places has to be smashed. We all need to be ready for the next unknown.
The last thought is certainly personal and has been incredibly fulfilling. One of the goals I have set for myself was to visit every state and national park within 250 miles of Price this year. About a month ago I decided to step up my hiking, touring and visiting. I spent a weekend in Mesa Verde near Cortez, Colo. hiked a large part of the San Rafael Swell down near Goblin Valley, and this past weekend I spent three days touring the Four Corners area. Hiking through the Valley of the Gods, Monument Valley, and the Natural Bridges canyons were some of the most incredible sights I have ever seen in my life.
We are very lucky in Utah to have these natural wonders literally out our back-door. As a photographer I have captured much of my trip on film and I am still in awe of the beauty as well as the history of the area.