Saturday, December 18, 2010

where will you spend eternity? Jesus Christ has the answer

A seriously heartwarming send off from friends at the school following the kids' christmas concert.

After the sun went down, we drove through a hundred wind turbines scattered in the fields around Chateauguay NY. Kind of creepy having these silent (for us), looming giants, arms akimbo emerge from the dark above the frozen trees. I suspect that the electric utility is promoting the sale of Christmas lights in upstate NY, where house-decorating has gotten downright competitive. The latest trend appears to be mini projectors perched on front lawns which cast festive (dare I say tacky) images on the side of the house. One home had a spotlight creatively pointed at two small reindeer on the lawn, casting massive deer-shaped shadows on the house (and also lighting up the unsuspecting family settled into the sofa in front of the tv). My favourite display was a larger than life-size crèche. The centerpiece was, of course, baby Jesus bundled in his massive cradle. On his right kneeled lovely Mary, to his left proud Joseph -- with Santa right over his shoulder straining to get a look before the magi showed up.

Stopped at a diner for dinner and watched an elderly black man parked at the counter cut his baked fish special into a million tiny pieces before performing the top-lip-swallowing chew only a truly toothless person can achieve. The clam chowder cup was thicker than pudding and mounded in the cup like ice cream-- we all balked and there stood the spoon, bolt upright in the middle, until our dinner was over. We put down the beds in the van and everyone got settled in. Along the shore of Lake Ontario, heading south at windy Buffalo. Driving around the great lakes in a hightop van is about as much fun as carrying a sheet of plywood alone across a windy yard. Passing big rigs becomes a very hands-on, often harrowing, lesson in aerodynamics. You have to plot the turns of the wheel as you engage the wind, take a few deep breaths in the brief calm, brace for the wake and then settle into being buffeted about. Bobbing along in the wake, an image that kept coming to mind was pedalling a tricycle at top speed after dad has driven over the front wheel.

Wil and I switched places at fill-ups and made it over the Indiana border for breakfast. Our determination NOT to eat at the chains paid off after skipping ten minutes of strip malls to find downtown Richmond and a little bagel shop suggested by Charles, a friendly stranger on the road. Indianans (is that what they're called?) are nice. We are leaking oil. Wil is not amused.

today's favourite signs:


Unknown said...

Awesome. Just a thought. My US road experience tells me that the best little restaurants are found in the worst strip malls cause that's the only rent that ma and pa type - first time restauranteurs can afford. Had the best Korean dinner ever in a very downscale stripmall along the beltway in Houston.

Jenny Wren said...

When the going gets tough the tough get going.
Jesus is with you. Love to all

Sarah Gilbert said...

Happy trails & buen viaje companeros!
p.s. My dad comes from Indiana (my Indian grandmother's name was Lula Mae, a handle I always loved) and for some reason (origin unknown) Indiana residents are known as Hoosiers.

A Friend Indeed said...

Great to hear the journey is well started ... terrible to hear the oil is leaking. Plug that hole!
If necessary, appeal to Jesus.

If dad really did run over your tricycle wheel, he apologizes.