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Enjoying the History Channel on This Holiday Weekend

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We've enjoyed the History Channel the last few days as they do their annual replay of US history. As we watch the programs it occurs to me that our experience traveling in the motor home for the last 9 years has given us a much closer connection to so many of the places that are mentioned on these programs.

Our understanding of any idea or concept is easier and more complete if we've had some personal experience with some part of the background or context of the idea. When it comes to history, the most important connection to make is time. As we have aged, we get a better sense of time as it relates to US history. It helps that we have lived about 25% of the US history since 1776. Somehow it makes the past a little less distant.

Another experience that helps understand history is to witness the changes that have taken place within our lifetime. To move from radio to HD TV, cell phones, twitter and e-mail is in itself a revolution. Of course, the history of RVs in our lifetime is equally as revolutionary. The difference of our lives today compared to what they would have been 60 years ago is startling. Having personal experience with this kind of change helps us understand the vastly different world in which our ancestors lived.

But the biggest experience that helps understand the history of the U.S. is having traveled, lived in and explored much of the country. We've walked Revolutionary and Civil War battlefields and toured numerous military forts and museums. We've seen the gold fields and panned for gold. We've visited railroad, auto and aviation museums. We've climbed volcanoes and rafted rivers. In short, we've explored this great country from one end to the other.

The History Channel programs continue ... buffalo, the Sioux Nation, Black Hills, more gold, the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, Manhattan and the modern skyscraper. Our motor home has made exploring all this possible in a way that no other means of transportation could. So today we celebrate the independence of this great country and we also salute the motor home and the independence it has given us.

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