I told her I needed to drive back down through DC to catch my evening flight out of Dulles on Wednesday, and she graciously invited me to drop by her home on the way. I happened to mention I hadn't gotten a chance to do any sightseeing while in DC, and there were two places I'd always wanted to visit.
Well, that's all Mary needed to hear and she had a plan. "I think we'll be able to talk to John about making that happen for you."
And suddenly, I was there.
Then Mary said, "Now turn around."
Of course I needed to get someone to take a picture of us, so here we are.
We walked past the Vietnam Memorial on the way back to the car. I need to... spend some time there some day.
Then it was on to Arlington Cemetery, so beautiful at this time of year.
John parked the car near the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and this time he and I got out while Mary stayed with the car. He looked at his watch, said "come on!", and started to jog up the hill.
We arrived just as the guards were changing. He put his arm around me and steered me right up front within feet of the guards. We stood together and watched.
Noticing I was transfixed, John asked in a whisper if I wanted to take a picture. Cameras were clicking all around me. But I just shook my head.
"It's very moving", he said as we left.
Thank you, Mary and John. Our time together meant a lot to me.