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A challenge from afar

It is not very often that people stare history in the face and marvel at what has happened. In fact there are very few occasions when the normal person stops in their tracks and stare long and hard at something and realizes even a tenth of the history it represents. My great grandfather built and flew the first airplane in Philadelphia in 1910. There was not much fanfare, in fact the only mention of it was in his obituary. But we have in our possession two photographs of the plane. One sitting on the street, and one running, made to look like it was flying.

One of the originals of the photo is hanging in my parents house. I borrowed it and scanned it. Now I have one in my apartment. Looking at the photo I feel my great grandfather reaching across time, the stare back at me. “I did this” he mutters in the background of the photo, barely audible over the din of the horse drawn carriage thundering by. He made his mark on history, a tiny yet indelible mark. I have yet to accomplish something like that. Yet it hangs on my wall a challenge, a brilliant gauntlet thrown across time daring me to dream.