"The world is not a lodging-house at Brighton, which we are to leave because it is miserable. It is the fortress of our family, with the flag flying on the turret, and the more miserable it is the less we should leave it."
-G. K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy
This here blog is a glimpse or two or three at the condition of the 'fortress of our family' through the eyes Timothy Goddard, a Christian writer with an unhealthy interest in politics living in the Puget Sound area.
From the streets of Baghdad to the streets of Everett Speaking of Everett, it also happens to have one of the largest Iraqi refugee populations in America. And boy, were they happy today! I wish I would have been home to see this!
Al-Aboudi joined an estimated 250 Iraqi-Americans in the heart of downtown Everett for the hour-long parade. United, the party included Shiites, Sunnis and Kurds.
Men, women and children sang, danced and paraded on the blocked-off street. Stomping up and down and cheering, many of the Iraqi men broke into spontaneous chants of "U-S-A, U-S-A and Thank You George Bush."
The women cheered the men on with chants of "yella, yella," an Arab cheer that loosely translates to "let's go."
Passersby stepped out of coffeshops, restaurants and hair salons, watching the Iraqi's and sometimes shouting out cheers of their own. Many introduced themselves as neighbors, shaking hands, sharing the the moment.
Everett Mayor Frank Anderson joined the Iraqis shortly after 2 p.m. and asked police to shut down Colby Avenue between Hewitt and Wall streets to allow the celebration to continue.
For many non-Iraqis, the demonstration confirmed that the United State's presence in Iraq is justified, even desired.
"It's awesome to know they are saying thank you," said Jessica Stone, 23, who works downtown at Studio Donna Hair Salon. "We've done something they've wanted for a long time."
For 13-year-old Rasul Altamimi, who doesn't remember her homeland, Wednesday was an opportunity to share in her parent's joy.
Rasul, whose parents fled Iraq when she was a baby, hopes this mean she can finally meet members of her family that she's never seen.
"Saddam is gone, now I can go back to my country."