well---okay---we left yesterday---but it was too late last night to blog---and truth be told---we arent in New York City---but we are in New York.
dave, ace & I got up at 0-dark-30 and (thanks Joe!) hopped on a 6 a.m. flight to Buffalo, NY (via Atlanta--I HATE ATLANTA AIRPORT (too too big))---btw---the airport and airplane were packed---WHY ARE ALL THESE PEOPLE UP SO STINKIN EARLY GOING SOMEWHERE?
anywho-----we had a lovely flight and rented a cute little---and i mean little---sorry ace-sitting-in-the-back-seat---aveo and off we drove to Rochester to our first hotel.
a little history---18 months ago i gave david a trip to Palmyra, NY ----the LDS church started in Palmyra and there are significant sites to be seen---so for 18 months every major holiday---i havent had to give him anything---just a reminder that the trip was coming....lame---but it aint a cheap trip!----anywho----dave was able to use his frequent credit card user/signer-upper points to find us hotels in the area every night---saving me well over $500----BONUS!
we got to our hotel and i had to make some work phone calls (got 11 calls while on the plane)---sitting in the room we heard planes taking off RIGHT OVER OUR HEAD! no wonder it was a cheap hotel (holiday inn---but apparently right on the landing strip)----we were laughing at the idea of not getting any sleep---so----calls finished---we went out to the car to drive the 20 minutes to Palmyra---and ZOOM---airplane overhead---we looked around and realized that there were tons of people looking up---we looked up---IT WAS THE BLUE ANGELS! 6 planes were doing formations right over our heads! WOWOWOWOWOW! so we got out our camera and watched....great show---totally bonus. (there will be pictures on this blog---but not right now.
drive to palmyra--via rochester downtown (bad navigator---i'm just sayin)....went straight to the Joseph Smith Farm---this is where Joseph lived with his family when he had his vision of God the Father and Jesus Christ.
after visiting the log and frame homes, the cooper shop, the threshing barn---we took the small hike to the Sacred Grove---this is a foresty area on the property where Joseph went after reading in the scriptures that if you wanted to know the truth---pray---so he went to a quiet area in the grove, knelt and prayed. No one knows the exact spot---there are dirt paths for people to walk----it is beautiful---and like 82'----compared to 182' in dallas---so we were thrilled. we found a bench and sat and looked....people were very quiet as they walked along the paths....we each went off to have some private time to reflect and pray on our own. There are trees there that WERE there when Joseph had his vision.
we saw a lot of grandparents with their children and THEIR children---dave and i decided we would bring our family here sometime soon---the Holy Spirit was so strong---it was a comfortable and comforting place.
as we were getting ready to continue our walk, a big family (obviously a reunion) came by---we waited for them to pass---then---they stopped a few yards beyond us and started singing a hymn IN PERFECT HARMONY! that is exactly what my mom and dad would have done with us----i videoed them and we chatted a bit with them.....everyone along the paths stopped to listen---it was angelic.
after we left the Grove---we drove to a pharmacy to get bugspray and Pringles---then to Subway for dinner (woot woot---yes---we go all the way to new york and have subway)---then head to Hill Cumorah for the pageant. (every year at this time, the church puts on a pageant re-enacting scenes from the Book of Mormon---the Hill Cumorah is where Joseph dug up the plates that had been buried there by Moroni 300 years after Christ's death. There were actors in costumes milling around chatting, taking pictures (ace got pics with everyone)---3 young men came up to us and chatted---then one bore his testimony of the truthfulness of what happened ---the vision, the Book of Mormon---it was so sweet---these boys were 17---just like Ace----I think he was touched.....success.
DID I MENTION THEY WERE SELLING SALT POTATOES? (just red or small potatoes boiled in water with more than a cup of salt in the water---then salted again and drenched in butter)---IT WAS PERFECT!
(sorry---back to the show) There were missionaries all over the place. There are 700+ people in the cast....and 9000 people in the audience---lady next to me is from this area---her parents brought her to the show 20 years ago---so now she is brought her daughter (about 16)---she's not LDS, but she felt it was something her daughter should see----God moves in mysterious ways......show started at 9:15 pm and ended about 10:30---it was so well-done.
and FREEZING! WHO KNEW WE NEEDED JACKETS IN THE MIDDLE OF JULY (leah did---so i brought a light sweater---but poor ace was freezing in t-shirt and shorts)
sidenote---a lot of anti-Mormons were picketing and using bull-horns before and after the show---telling us Mormons were sinners and how wrong we were----ya know---I dont think Mormons picket Easter Sunday mass at the Vatican---we shrug (hmmm---remind me to link that story of Mormons shrugging---think it was from the Washington post or New York post or some post)
sorry for the long post----there will be more today----going to see where the Book of Mormon was published, the temple, Peter Whitmer's farm (where Joseph spent a lot of time translating)---but its 9:15 a.m. and dave and ace are still zonked---UNHEARD OF!
and now i'm humming "start spreading the news---i'm leaving today---i want to be a part of it---new york, new...."