It’s Important To Remember And Reflect

by Vanessa Lee

At the 9/11 memorial

I am a lover of words and especially meaningful quotations which I collect and file away for future use. I like to think that I often live my life by the words in certain quotations although I suspect not as much as I might think or as much as I should. However, the power of words does affect me in many ways.

I don’t plan to write about cruising in this issue – other than the fact that when you read this I will be cruising along the Hudson River ex NYC with some great friends of mine whom I see too infrequently. And I have never cruised up the Hudson as such, just in and out of New York harbour or Cape Liberty and recently from the Brooklyn Naval Yard on QM2 (rather an incongruous paring in fact). So, I have certainly cruised past the iconic Statue of Liberty often in awe of the wondrous skyline of one of the greatest cities in the world. And on many occasions I have reflected on what that Statue has meant to so many.

I hope that on this past weekend, the 15th anniversary of 9/11 that you also paused to think of those who lost their lives, said a prayer perhaps, blessed those brave souls and perhaps even, as I did, shed a few tears in remembrance. I knew 2 people who were killed in the Towers and last year when I visited the absolutely amazing 9/11 memorial, I was able to find their names both at the Reflecting Pools and also inside the Museum.

If you have not been, then I hope you will make it a point to go soon. The whole area is remarkable and the Museum itself is an unbelievably thoughtful and wonderful homage to that day. I wept for most of the time I walked through it, so much so in fact that I had to take time out to just sit and catch up with my emotions. It was utterly heart-wrenching but in a way that made sense. It is an immensely  sobering experience and one which brings with it sombre thoughts - as it should. And I hark back to November 11th and the anniversary we all celebrate that day – Armistice Day – remembering  wars of another kind. And I say to myself “Lest We Forget” and that is a mantra we should all consider every day of our lives.  

And that brings me to the quote that I thought of as I started writing this column:

“What you do matters, but why you do it matters so much more”.

I’m afraid I can’t attribute it, but I read it recently with other interesting quotes from a site that you can find on twitter (as we follow each other) @EntrepreneurQ.  

Another much loved quote that I totally relate to was one sent to me when I left Encore Cruises 10 years ago by a great friend and colleague, Heather Qually, whom many of you may know and who sadly passed away after a brave cancer battle, just last August. She is in my mind and heart always and happenstance I passed along this great quote from Teddy Roosevelt to a friend a few days ago and I thought it was a suitable reminder again for this time of year - and for every time we fall or fail and are not sure if we can get up and try again.

The Man in the Arena - “It is not the critic who counts, not the one who points out how the strong man stumbled or how the doer of deeds might have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred with sweat and dust and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, and spends himself in a worthy cause; who, if he wins, knows the triumph of high achievement; and who, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat”.

I hope this inspires you as much as it has inspired me over the years.

September 11 Memorial South pool

September 11 Memorial ladder 3

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