Last evening, I attended my parents annual Christmas party. It was the 28th version of it. I feel my parents are extremely fortunate. My dad will be 80 and my mom will be 78 this coming March. They have a group of around 30 people of similar age that travel and spend their winters in Florida. My father plays golf 2-3 times/week with "guys his age". one of the best golfers in their group is Andy who's almost 86! So back to the party! In the early days, my parents would pack 50-60 people into their tiny cape-style home. It doesn't have any fancy additions, so it's basically the kitchen, dining room and living room. Last night, they had about 25 people attend. I know most of them from over the years, so it's always nice to have the privaledge of hanging out with seniors who truly appreciate and love life. For a while, all the men sat in the living room by the fire telling old war stories from WWII and Korea. My father and one of his close buddies told the longest, most detailed stories. So after hearing a few, I told my dad and the other story teller, "Obama should send you two over to Afghanistan to tell the Taliban some stories...they'll surrender within 2 days!" and they laughed loudly...especially the other guys who knew exactly what I was saying! But to hear about their bravery and their fears from "America's Greatest Generation" was truly an honor. After we finished the story telling, everyone went intot the open Kitchen-dining room area to sing....who TF SINGS these days?! My mom & dad handed out the old Christmas carol books and began to sing from the heavens! After a while, I started to feel very emotional as tears threatened to fall. But I couldn't help or stop the emotion I felt. These people had all lived full lives and raised large families and they were not only still "ticking", they were BEATING the drums of life like no one I know! After the carols were over, my dad sang some Irish ballads. he still has a great voice and knows so many songs by heart that I can't believe he always forgets people's names! Finally, the guys started to sing old war songs like The Halls of Montezuma and the Caisson Song and finally into old patriotic songs like America & God Bless America. These men & women survived the great depression, WWII, the Korean conflict, Vietnam & the 60's....and they have nothing but love, family, friendship and comraderie in their hearts. They honestly seem to fear nothing...unlike many of our generations that fear almost everything. They are all, "nearing the end" but live their lives as if they're never going to die. I learned a lot last night and it affected me deeply. I can only pray that I'll be blessed with so many friends who care about each other that deeply and share a connection that transcends generations of change and adaptation. And to think I once thought they were all to blame for America's wrongs! Today, i know I have them to thank for most of the blessings we now have.3 Harry, I wish you could have been there!