Travel Date: Tuesday, Oct 21 2014
I got in late the previous night and hung out with my hosts Jeff and Kelley Bodell. After chatting with both of them for a while and getting suggestions of what to do tomorrow I went to bed.
Travel Date: Wednesday, Oct 22nd 2014
Got up the next morning, talked to Jeff for a bit and then went to the coffeeshop he recommended in Norman: Gray Owl Coffee.

I got the quiche, which was good but small in size. And the coffee was okay.

I sat down, whipped out my laptop and starting blogging for a bit.

Enjoyed this visual of a bicycle suspended from the roof.

And then I decided to get my car service at a Midas store.

Next stop Oklahoma City.

When I got there I parked near the Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum and decided to check it out. I was in Dubai when it happened and remember seeing it on all the news channels.

However when I got out of my car, I closed the door in a haste and jammed my nail between the door and the frame. Ouch it hurts like a MF is describing my pain lightly.

Holding my fingers tightly to numb the pain as much as I can I look around at the site.

At the entrance about to go into the Museum.

A make-shift bench that is part of the original building.

I get my ticket … One City, One Nation, One Resolve.
The first exhibit is on the third floor.

One of the surveillance cameras used

And the picture it took.

I enter the room where they would revive the sensations of the moment it happened.

The number of people who died.

I watched various TV broadcasts

Parts of the actual building that survived.

I walk down to the second floor they dive into the investigation. The investigative story and how they conduct and parse for clues is well documented and detailed. Really great museum information and layout.

Neat stuff. Tire prints.

There are some interactive touch screens that allow you to see where the trail of evidence leads to.

Time to play with the touch screens

The actual destruction.

A picture of the memorial outside and skyline from inside the building.

Time to go outside and see this in person.

After the memorial I head out to the Republic where I plan to meet up with a good friend and Sigma Nu volunteer Mike.

Mike has been a dedicated volunteer for Sigma Nu for a long long time and over the years I have seen him at numerous Grand Chapters. He is also a very passionate Delta Epsilon Chapter member at University of Oklahoma and really excited about the building of the new chapter home. We spend a lot of time talking and catching up on Sigma Nu nationally and at Delta Epsilon, about my travels, and each other’s lives. It was great to reconnect with him in his city.

Trying some local beer. I don’t remember what it is but it was good.

Mike heads out and I grab some dinner.

Whoa, it got dark quickly.

I drive around and meet up with Zain at a cup cake place: Sara Sara Cupcakes.

Look at those goodies just waiting to GET IN MY BELLY!

I meet up with Zain and we catch up on old times. Zain and I canvassed together for the 2nd term of Obama knocking on doors in rural Buena Vista (BV). BV didn’t go blue but we did our job to keep Virginia blue by getting the Democrats in Southwestern Virginia to show up at the voting booth. Zain is now in medical school and I take the opportunity to quiz him on my jammed finger which is getting seriously annoying and painful.

At least this helps, right?

It was great to see Zain and say my goodbyes to him. He has a lot of medical studying to do.

My finger is killing me right now. Just throbbing insanely. I head on home to Norman, hang out with Jeff and Kelley and call it a night.

In the middle of the night/morning I get up and cauterize my nail with a lighter and a safety pin. I cannot sleep since the pain is throbbing and unbearable. Thank you Patricia again for the suggestions on what to do. You saved my sanity. After watching numerous videos on my phone and reading about how to do it online I do bathroom surgery and relieve an enormous amount of pressure building up from the blood under my finger nail. Once cauterized I was able to sleep peacefully.

In the morning I get up and say my goodbyes and leave to Wichita, Kansas. But before I go I promised Mike that I was going to check out the construction of the Sigma Nu Delta Epsilon house at University of Oklahoma so I do.

Time to head out to Wichita, Kansas and stay with a couchsurfer: Jen.

Reflections:


I am very grateful to Jeff and Kelley for providing me a place to stay in Norman. They came in clutch for me. I know they were busy with their lives and had a lot going on but they were able to host and that saved me endless about of stress.

Seeing the Oklahoma City Memorial was amazing. I was not personally affected by it since I was in another country when it happened and never ever fathomed being in the United States at that time – but seeing the devastation and reliving some of the manufactured and recreated experiences at the museum one cannot help but feel saddened. The Museum did a great job of preserving and presenting the material. The actual memorial was peaceful and beautiful as well.

I was a little bit disappointed that my NPS Annual Pass did not count to the Memorial. Apparently they partner with the NPS but are not part of the NPS so I still had to pay the $12.00 fee to see the museum.

Seeing and spending time with Mike was great. Such a devoted Sigma Nu.

And Zain, it was good to see you as well – even if just for a few minutes. We will always have the memories of working at Fran’s house in Buena Vista busting our butts and enjoying the outcome of our hard canvassing work.

Expenses: $121.56
Maintenance: $69.96 (Midas)
Coffee: $7.25 (Gray Owl Coffee)
Parking: $3.00
Oklahoma City National Memorial: $12.00
Gas: $10.01
Coffee: $2.45 (Starbucks)
Dinner: $16.89 (Gastropub)