My husband and I took a part of today to drive out to San Joaquin Valley National Cemetery located in Gustine, California, or Santa Nella depending on which website you look at. The trip is a straight shot south down Highway 5, taking us just an hour to get there.
My Dad, a WW II veteran, was buried there in 1996, and two years ago my Mom joined him there in her final resting place.
The cemetery is absolutely beautiful, nestled in a little valley with hills that sparkle in their green lushness in winter and spring, and glisten in golden brown during the hot summer months. Driving down Highway 5 you would not even know it’s there; the site is way back off the freeway, hidden away by the hills.
Today, it is shrouded in fog and shows another side of it’s beauty. The stillness as we stepped out of the car was stunning, the silence broken only by the sound of birds singing from the trees in greeting.
As we drove away down the winding path from the gravesites a blue bird flitted across the path in to the trees nearby. I’d like to think that was my Mom saying thanks for visiting and bringing flowers. The sadness in my heart was a little bit less.