Liberty and justice for all

State of Mind? Pretty darn good. I was a mess this morning though. I didn’t sleep well last night, and that coupled with the exhaustion of the week made for one screwed up human this morning. It took me until about 3p to get it together. Iona and I just came back from walking Michael to the gym and running back. Shower and then I am headed out to the market. All good.

Yesterday morning we heard on the Today show that the Statue of Liberty crown was opening back up on July 4th. Very cool.

What made us laugh though, was when we heard all the red tape people will have to go through to actually GET to the crown. They are limiting entrance to 30 people at a time, and they will have to go through two check points and sign a waiver. Don’t get me wrong, there are 354 steps, they are steep, there is no AC, and it will get claustrophobic. But a waiver? Seriously? Tell people that it is hot and crowded and get on with it. Ah, but that would not be the American way. We must put our warnings and cautionary tales on paper and post them everywhere and often. God forbid you actually take personal responsibility for your safety and know your own person enough to determine if the hike up the crown is a wise move for you.

As a point of contrast, both Michael and I thought immediately of the St. Vitus cathedral within the Prague Castle grounds. In order to get to the castle itself, you need to walk up a pretty steep hill. Once you get there, you would be remiss not to go up the winding and narrow tower staircase.

When we were there a few years ago it was about 95 degrees out and I can say with certainty that there was no AC. I guess they didn’t think about that in 1344 when construction started. There are 287 stairs and while it is possible for one person to go up while another comes down, there are places where the ascending person needs to hug the wall and pause. I actually was grateful for this as I took advantage of the cutouts in the stone to take gasping breaths of clean air. You see, it was damn hot, I was slightly nauseous from walking in circles, and many Europeans still don’t understand the benefits of deodorant.

The view though was so worth it. You see the most incredible side of Prague, including the famous Charles Bridge which connects the two sides of the city.

Granted I do not speak Czech, but I don’t recall seeing major warning posters pounded into the stone walls. Nor did we sign a waiver or go through security checkpoints. Funny that we didn’t see people dying from exhaustion or plunging to their death. How on earth did these people know to take precaution?

I guess I shouldn’t be so hard on our government and their quest to protect people. In a nation of Octo Moms, Miss California and Jon Gosselins, it is only fair that they think the rest of us are idiots too.