I slept well, got up at my usual time, made my modest breakfast, checked the news and weather on line, then after chatting with Debbie a bit, and making arrangements for lunch I headed out to the UU to greet people. I have an ongoing job, since the opening of our newly built church, to welcome people at the front door. Here is a fine photo by Dale Clark of us greeters in action, used for the Annual Meeting brochure. There are so many classic elements in just the right position to make this photo look like a Norman Rockwell style painting of 21st Century Americans going to a UU church.
A greeting at the Unitarian Universalists of Central Oregon (UUFCO) Bend, Oregon, on a typical Sunday morning.
That’s me, holding my hand out to a guy and his kids, silhouetted like a statue. The Sunday service was very pleasant, with a reading of a story to the kids and then singing them out to their Sunday school under an arch of upraised hands. The adults then heard a short meditative reading and then we had a couple of minutes of quiet meditation, then a couple of songs and a sermon. This particular sermon was light and friendly, perhaps because we were going to have the Annual Meeting with voting and such necessary fussing around after the service. During the half hour break for lunch between these two scheduled events I had a couple of short but meaningful conversations, including one with the THA chief architect Corey. He was here from Portland with an architectural photographer getting photos of “his” church ready for a publication. The whole experience was as pleasant as in the photo.
I departed as soon as possible, because of a time overlap conflict, to go to the Atheists of Central Oregon meeting at Dudley’s bookstore. This is a friendly group of thoughtful people, who get together and discuss various questions, such as what is the meaning of life, and how do atheists cope with various existential questions. Today it was epistemology, how do we know what we know, and how can we tell truth from fantasy. It was a lively discussion, but of course on these questions there can never be a final answer, and every situation must be judged on its own merits. I met Debbie there, and we went to lunch at a Thai restaurant named Wild Rose and had fine meal of golden squash, and a crispy rice salad, with heat ratings of 3 out of 5 and that is just about right. The last time we had a 4 and that was good too but quite hot, and we needed the cucumbers provided to cool down our burning mouths. We are hesitant to try a 5. After that we met Jim, as we often do on Sunday afternoons, and had an excellent conversation about generalized legal matters, like law theory and problems with practical applications.
Debbie and I drove home with the idea of me taking a short nap, as I usually do in mid afternoon, and Debbie read to me while I relaxed. At present our readings are from Roget’s Thesaurus of Words for Intellectuals, it’s a word list with synonyms and some commentary, then a short piece out of This Idea Must Die from Edge.org, and then a couple of pages from The Secret History of Kindness, by Melissa Pierson. After that I dozed off for a half hour of semi-snooze. At 5 O’clock I was up and off to the Spiritual Awareness Meeting. This group is a complete balance to the atheist group. It’s an emotional-huggy heart group versus the totally rationalizing heady group. I love and respect them both.
So here I am typing this diary style blog, which I rarely do, just to have a remembrance of a typical Sunday. Now it’s time to watch the very last episode of Mad Men. It’s also the last week of David Letterman’s 33 year run of the Late Show, so I have been watching him condense all those years into fast-paced clips. Oh, I forgot to mention I did a few minutes fussing around in the garden, and because we were about to have a rain, I hosed off the car, and let the rain rinse it off cleaner with pure water, also I wrote this blog post.
A typical Sunday.