Monday, June 09, 2008

Sunday evening surprise

This particular Sunday afternoon was hot, hot, hot.

During the all-church picnic (hot dogs, sausage, pasta salad, tossed salad, and baked beans: yay!), I chose to lounge in the shade on a friend's blanket. Others ( obviously not as health-conscious as myself) were lured to play lawn games by authoritative people in red baseball caps. Masses of athletic and shrieking people cavorted while I lounged.

No matter, we were all hot. All of us.

After the picnic, my favorite family wrapped up the afternoon by visiting another family. In order to save gas, we dropped #1 Son's car off in the empty drive of an old abandoned country church--the kind of church that makes me want to peek inside and look at all the old stuff. We combined our economic forces into one (1) vehicle and proceeded to our destination.

Once inside our friend's farmhouse, we discussed their upcoming re-modeling project while sipping pink lemonade. #1 Son threw his sizzling and sweaty body into their pool while #1 Daughter either dangled her feet in the water or escaped to the air-conditioned house to read a borrowed book. Little boys hung all over them, which they took in stride. Even despite the heat.

Did I mention the heat?

By early evening, we were all wrung out from the heat. We piled into one (1) car and Hubby drove us to the second (2nd) car, which was part-way home.

Important note: We "save gas" a lot in this house, seeing that six of us live here and we own a total of five (5) cars. We "save gas" so much that there were four (4) of our vehicles at church yesterday for the six (6) or us. Impressed? I thought as much.

As #1 Son and I were being dropped off at his car, I noticed that the little abandoned church was experiencing some serious action. There were three, maybe four other cars in the yard. And the front doors (made of oak and pointy at the top, like church doors are supposed to be) were open. An elderly lady was playing look-out there, hopefully glancing in our direction as we nonchalantly got in our car. I felt sneaky and irreligious, brazenly parking in their tiny driveway without putting in some pew-time.

"They actually have a service here tonight." I exclaimed as I read the church sign. "We should go."

We were a mile along when #1 Son turned off the road and swung the car around.

"Okay," he said with a shrug. What a guy.

So we sheepishly re-parked, hopped up the steps, and slid into a slightly-further-to-the-back pew. We were greeted enthusiastically by the eight parishioners and their substitute pastor who was late anyway and was hastily throwing an ecclesiastical parament over his shoulders. I'm sure the added garment, although official-looking, didn't make him any cooler.

After taking in the sights (smiling and white-haired grandmas and grandpas), I figured the average age of those gathered together to ask the Lord's blessing, including #1 Son and myself, was definitely over eighty. Maybe eighty-five. It's hard to say.

We sang two hymns a cappella, read two prayers aloud, listened to the reading of the Old Testament and the New Testament, joined in The Lord's Prayer, and listened to a short sermon. After the service (forty minutes long) an elderly gent offered to "show us around". It took ten minutes, as there wasn't much to see. He was very proud of their church. It was built in 1837.

I was invited to play the 125 year old pump organ (fun) --and we saw the fellowship "hall" and the church kitchen--which has no sink, stove, or running water. Just a counter on which to serve potluck the old-fashioned way, I guess!

I truly enjoyed our impromptu visit to the Buck's Bridge Community Church. The only moment I regret was when the wooden offering plate was passed to us....and #1 Son and I couldn't even cough up a nickel. They were so very gracious; didn't even blink an eye over it. They know times are tough and gas isn't cheap.

Country folk: the salt o' the earth!


Blogger TrashTidBits said...

I always wondered how to spell a cappella. No I didn't give my dad the plague and I'm sure he appreciates the plaque I gave him. Thanks for bringing my attention to the typo.

5:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You should have given me a ring-a-ling on the cell. I would have joined you crazy people, for sure! Thanks again for all the input. You guys are the best!

7:35 PM  

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