I don't have social media anymore, but when my wife told me about the Freedom Convoy coming through, I strapped a flag onto the suburban and tied a tabletop to the grill, one with a design we did a few years back of Old Glory and some important piece of paper they call the....what was it, oh yeah, the Declaration of Independence. ;)
She told me to head for Exit 410, the last Exit for South Dakota, which didn't make any sense to me at all. We live in BRANDON. Why not meet on that overpass and somebody hang some letters, something like L E T ' S GO....? That would send a clear message. Or why not meet at Veteran's Parkway, there's another ringing bell, but the wife said 410 and so, off to 410 I went.
When I got there, there wasn't so much as a jackrabbit on the side of the road, it was just me, myself, and I. I wondered if I was in the wrong spot, but I did see an eagle soaring high in the sky, so I figured that must be some kind of good omen.
I got out of the truck to some steep, steep wind and some downright bitter South Dakota cold, so I threw on my Milwaukee heated jacket which had no battery in it. Turns out the heated part isn't too heated without that battery. ;).
A trucker stopped and said, "What in the world are all the flags I've been seeing? Are you protesting something!?" I told him about the convoy coming through, headed for D.C., and he looked like that was the first he ever heard of it. A little more time passed and then a gal stopped and rolled down her window to ask me when they were coming. I had no idea. Sometime this morning? I hoped they hadn't decided to take I-29.
Just as I was getting plum cold and beginning to reconsider the wisdom of my situation, a trucker down on the interstate honked his horn. My oh my, what a warm feeling that came coursing through my cold bones! Then another honked. Then another. Soon another vehicle stopped, and suddenly there were two of us. Then three. Then 10, then 20. My girls were there with me, and one by one more flags began to appear. More horns honked and before you knew it, there we were, patriots one and all. Young men, old men, boys, girls, toddlers, moms, and grandmas. It really was a beautiful thing to see. The highway patrol showed up, waved at us in a friendly way, and let us know they would station an officer on either side of the bridge to slow down traffic.
I have to say for the dozen or so of you passerby's on the Interstate who gave us the finger and flipped us off for waving our flags and supporting our truckers, I hope you know there were 50 more cars honking and giving a thumbs up for every one of you. My friends, you are greatly, severely, horribly outnumbered, and we'll not be going gentle into that good night.
After 2 hours of waiting and hands that went so numb they still haven't regained feeling 5 hours later, that beautiful Freedom Convoy popped over the hill, and it all became worth it. I got a shot of my daughter that reminded me of Lady Liberty, and so I think I'll title it that way. I sure was proud of her, and of our country. Roll on Truckers, and may God bless your ride.