Dating Life

She drove. Part 2

After the first session we all shuffled out into the sunlight and made our way out of the square to find some food. We found a small fast food place that wasn’t swamped with people and we men went inside to brave the crowd while the women found a shady tree to sit under for lunch. As we waited in line I started a conversation with the Spanish-speaking family behind me. I thought it a great opportunity to practice. We talked about food and family. A major conversation piece was their little toddler that was going all over the place. On our way there I had seen him stop and stare in the middle of the cross walk and then tear off ahead of his poor parents. After talking for a while I realized that the other guys in my group also spoke Spanish, and we practiced for a while.

We got done with lunch and headed back for the conference center. By now it was time to get in there so that we could get a seat. The temple grounds were heavy with pedestrian traffic. It was just like the roads except there were no signals, rules or stop lights. It got a little scary, I thought I was going to get run over or sucked into an eddy while the group flowed on to where ever we were headed. but we all arrived in time and in one piece so I was feeling good.

I’m sorry to say that I had a little trouble keeping focused this time. I told my date to just elbow me if I started dosing, which explains the sore ribs I had the next day, come to think of it. She must have enjoyed it. I did take notes though and toward the end I was alert.

It was fun to sing as a congregation in such a large body of saints and with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir it felt like we were one huge choir singing great hymns. I always get goosebumps when that happens.

Everyone waddled out as if in a daze. Squeezed our way through to a statue in the middle of the marble floored hall and watched all the people staggering out in large quantities to start the traffic jam once again. My group tailed me to the bag check room to grab my backpack. Then we strolled toward the parking lots. We passed the protesters, the ticket seekers and little boys selling the Conference News. The homeless were still placed randomly in our midst, I saw a girl run up to one of them and place a bill in the hands of a man in a wheel chair while his wife sat beside him looking gray and feeble. This was one time that a girl showed me up for courage.

There were three couples in our group. A married couple, a boy friend and girlfriend, and my date and I. They escorted us to our car and we said our goodbyes. We drove away to find the interstate. As we pulled out I couldn’t help but feel a little twinge of self-consciousness being the man and waving goodbye from the passenger seat. But after all, it was her dad’s car.

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She drove. Part 1

This past weekend I had the rare opportunity of going to see General Conference. An old friend invited me to go with her. We have hung out for the past month doing random stuff so it was nice to do something with a bit of structure.

It was an amazing experience to walk the temple grounds and see the people come together from all parts of the world. many would be envious of the chance to see the conference speakers in the flesh, even though they appeared as tiny specks in the distance. There is also the spectacle of demonstrators in the streets competing with the member choir singing hymns.

The first thing that caught my attention was the fact that Utah is in spring while in Wyoming winter is still latched onto our pant leg. The place is abloom with tulips, and daffodils, the trees glow white and pink in the sunlight, grass as green as… well, grass. Pastel colors are sharply contrasted with the black suit coats and conservative colors of Sunday dress. It’s something unreal to stand in a perfect atmosphere with a girl by your side and no wind burning your face to tell you it’s not a dream.

Like everything it had its catches. All the way up from the two dollar parking we were bombarded by homeless people, protesters, newsies, and people in their Sunday best asking if we had any spare tickets on hand. I also got nailed by the ushers about my missionary backpack, i had to put it in the package checkroom.

So with my journal sticking awkwardly out of my suit jacket i accompanied my companion through the doors at the last-minute to the last few seats in the place. For a recently returned missionary there are few sights more exhilarating than seeing the Mormon Tabernacle choir perform live. I hadn’t the slightest urge to dose during the session. Though my nose was a little stuffy and I had a hard time keeping it from whistling and drawing too much attention.

We were some of the fortunate few that got to attend both sessions, thanks to my friend’s connections. At first we were only going to the second session but since one of her connections happened to be present we had an unexpected opportunity. Mine was to sit next to a little Hispanic kid that had translation equipment for headgear. He kept looking at me when my nose made funny noises.

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