Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Ketchup 10: From Zanesville to Rix Mills.


Picking up the pace a little...

Our schedule was tight enough that we'd have to get most of our visiting done the next day. We rode out to the Colony Square Mall and picked me up a tie and dress shirt for the occassion. From there we drove out to Combridge to visit with Becky and Bill for a few hours, and they took us to a pizza place on the edge of town. It was a pleasant, relaxed afternoon, which was nice in the rushing around of the whole trip. Ultimately, though, things picked up again, and we drove through New Concord on the way to Rix Mills for the rehearsal for our second wedding.

Rix Mills lies six or seven miles out from New Concord in some of the breathtakingly beautiful farmland, rolling river valleys and patchwork hills with cows grazing all about. The town itself is a particularly elevated and tree-studded patch of road consisting of maybe a dozen or so houses and a single large Presbyterian church. This was where Jill and Ron's wedding took place. We parked the car and went inside. It was quite cold out, and the weather had been changeable all week. After the rehearsal, which was conducted by the presiding minister, a friend of Ron from college, we went into the rec room for a dinner of ribs and pork. Jill made each of her bridgemaid's a beautiful shawl. Eventually we helped carry chairs up to the sanctuary for the ceremony, and headed out. The wedding party kids (myself included) decided to meet for coffee and dessert at Denny's, and so Jess and I drove into Zanesville and sat in the parking lot while we waited for the others to arrive. I made further dents in Derrida (reading seventy pages of Derrida is like reading ten pages of anything else) and then we went it. Jess got a shake, I got a coffee, and everyone was laughing and talking. The next day was going to be one of the busiest of the trip, though, so we finally called it a night and went home. Jeff and Chelsea were there when we got back, so we had the chance to visit with them as well.

The next day, Jess had to be out early to get ready with Jill and the other bridgesmaids. My day was initially uneventful... I spent a good three hours with Derrida, but Jeff and Chelsea and dad managed to talk me into a trip to Bob Evans for lunch. In the end, there was even enough time to stop back home and switch off vehicles. He let me drive the Santa Fe out to the wedding. Even though I was early, the whole town and then some had shown up, and I had to park quite a way down the road. The weather kept changing, literally minute to minute, with the blue mixing it up with big huge roiling balls of white cloud. The day could go either way, it seemed. As for the church, it more than filled up. It wasn't a large church, but there were still a dozen or so pews and plenty of chairs besides. Nevertheless, the place was packed, a few people ended up standing when all was said and done.

Then, for the second time in a week, I saw a beautiful wedding. Both Jill and Ron looked elegant and equal to the occasion, but of course, Jess was the most gorgeous person in that room to me. The sermon was one of the most striking and tight I've ever heard, pulling on the gospel reading... the need for firm foundations... via covered bridges and civil engineering and the rigor of a sound design. I can't really do it justice here. After the ceremony, we were dismissed row by row and waited outside to throw rice the bridge and groom emerged. They wind kept blowing and the weather still vascillated. But then Ron and Jill came out, and the sky finally cleared for good. It started to warm. We returned to the car, and when I turned on the ignition, I remembered that I'd had The Giving Tree Band playing on the ride over. We set off into the sunshine and pointed ourselves toward Zanesville.



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