Tuesday, June 26, 2007

A Place Away

This is our week to pack up and move out to our little house for Campmeeting. Our family has been part of this annual spiritual event at various times for over a hundred years, but without fail since the 1950s. A United Methodist Campground, it brings together an odd mixture of religion and family reunion where two services a day are held under the roof of the open air tabernacle and old friends gather for long visits on porch swings, around dinner tables or in the pews.

The week is an odd mixtures of long time traditions and modern innovations and, sometimes, a surprise or two:
The folks who stay in the barn-like houses are called 'tenters,' the mobile home area is for 'campers' and the campsites are for 'campers' who stay in campers or RVs.
Vinyl tablecloths and antique dishes share the table with no excuses and even special guests are urged to 'help yourself.'
The kitchen has a stove, refrigerator and microwave, but there is no hot water, no radio, no TV.
The screendoors are latched at night and birdsong is the only lullaby needed.

It is a place away, a time away. It is what each person makes it.

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