Happy Birthday to my three-year-old granddaughter Gretchen
Traveling with 15-month-old on an airplane across the AtlanticI

I remember my first visit to Paris ten years ago.


Posing by the Arc de Triomphe.
Paris is one of the most dynamic and historic cities that I've ever visited.

We were only in Paris overnight, but I remember being impressed by a unique sense of world history.  I was part of a mission team that was flying home from Mali in West Africa where we had been working on a school construction project.


I saw enough to know that I'd like to spend more time there to see the places where some of the key events in world history took place.  Our taste for the city was whetted by touring the Lourve and the Notre Dame Cathedral.

That's why I was transfixed to watching the news reports of the tragic events in the city.  It was a frontal attack by terrorists on one of the main stages for the world.  It was hard to concentrate and it was a reminder of what happened in this country on 9-11.

My heart goes out to the people of Paris and to the people of the world as we transition to a new dynamic for settling conflicts.