The streets are cobblestone, the sidewalks brick, the village is totally accessible by walking to beautiful shops, restaurants and other points of interest. These are the same streets upon which George Washington, Benjamin Franklin and other founding fathers walked. The harbor that surrounds the city is where the American Navy defended our freedom during the war of 1812. It is the same harbor where Francis Scott Key saw the bombs bursting in air. The city of Annapolis, Maryland is where the capitol of the United States rested prior to moving to Washington D.C. The city is steeped in history and is maintained in a manner that makes one proud.
Walking in Annapolis or sitting on a bench at the harbor is an experience that envelops the total person. The serenity of the water and the stately formation of the buildings reminiscent of the 1700’s allows anyone to have a vicarious experience of grand proportion. Surrounding the ambiance of the environment are young men and women walking crisply along the streets dressed in their Naval Academy uniforms. It was in this environment that June and I arrived.
Words cannot completely express the flooding of the senses one gets when touring the Naval Academy. At every turn the principles upon which America was founded are present. Strong academics permeate the curriculum. The body is developed and finely honed with a rigorous physical fitness and sports program. I was in absolute amazement when I learned the rigors of the swimming requirement of all the midshipmen. Discipline and presentation of self is commendable in every aspect. I could go on and on and on…………
All of the aforementioned takes place on a campus that began in 1845. The condition of the buildings and grounds are above reproach and represent the very best in architectural design depicting the era in which they were built.
June and I spent the morning on the campus of the Naval Academy. We visited the museum where authentic ships from the 1800’s are on display. At the same time we viewed the capsules of the many naval astronauts. We prayed in the Chapel where 4500 midshipman have the opportunity to worship. We watched the formation of this large group of young men and women and stood in awe at the precision of their movements as they went about their daily tasks.
Annapolis has its own uniqueness and is a place June and I truly enjoyed just “hanging out.” It was one of the places we did not want to leave. However, in departing I could not help but wonder why all of our schools don’t embrace the philosophy of educating the total person as does the Academy. I wonder while all schools don’t shift to a three semester approach with one semester for career exploration or enrichment . This is a concept I have advocated for years to no avail. Oh well, there I go again.
Tomorrow we leave for Virginia to visit with friends and then back home to Greensboro. I plan to write a personal summary of our journey.
June and Gary
“truth faith and courage are like a kite–an opposing wind raises it higher.”