Monday, June 26, 2006

rabbi cats

i just returned from PA where i performed the wedding of my college roommate jacklyn hyde.

it was an interesting weekend. since it would have been a 14 hour trip by train i flew. the last time i flew was 1998 so i expected that it was going to be quite different this time. i had no idea.

hubby dropped my off a few minutes past 10am to catch an 11:11 flight that should only take an hour. i checked in and found my gate quite easily despite the long backup through the baggage checkpoint. i even had to take off my sandels to go through the metal detector. once at the gate i discovered that my plane was delayed and i gave jh a call to tell her to check with the airport before coming to pick me up. apparently, the flight i was supposed to be on was delayed so that the crew could get the required 8 hours rest before taking off again. and then there was another delay which wasn't explained to us.

i called jh again and left another message telling her that the flight which should have arrived at 12:30 wasn't going to get in on her end until 15 minutes before we were all supposed to go out for tea at 2:30... we'd have to figure something else out for getting me from the airport.

meanwhile, sitting at the gate i discovered that i was surrounded by people who were either deaf or signing... few of them were actually sitting together. it was striking me as somewhat odd. my cell phone rang and it was jh. "oh good, you're still there!"

"no, not really... i should be on the plane by now." we both laugh.

"the best man and his wife are going to pick you up. there names are e and a." i got cell phone numbers and said i'd call them once i got to pittsburgh airport.

"oooh, the plane is here." and we both said yippee (jh and i have a history of always saying the same things at the same time.)

it was a small plane... only 18 rows, 3 seats across each row. i was in row 17. we all get on, get settled, and start to move and then we stop.

"this is the captian speaking. i don't know if you all can see out the windows on the right side of the plane..." we all look out the right side of the plane. "but another plane (about the same size as ours) had to come in for a landing without its landing gear... everyone's fine... but they had to shut down the airport."

the plane errupts in nervous laughter.

"if there is anything we can do to make your wait more comfor..."

the plane errupts again "it's too hot!!!"

the wait was suprisingly short and we arrived in pitt around 2:30. i pull out my cell phone and call e. "i'm in pittsburgh!"

"we're still coming from ohio! find the bar, get a drink, get something to eat, and we'll call you as soon as we're close."

i find the bar. i need a beer.

eventually e and a show up. a is the best man, e his doctor wife. they are fantastic and i actaully enjoy the 2 hour ride to the wedding rehearsal that we are only 15 minutes late getting to.

the rehearsal was short and sweet. i usally give a big speech at rehearsals about everyone being on time and not drinking before the wedding, but considering that the source of that speech was late and had been drinking i decided to skip it.

jh's mom took me back to the b&b to get changed for the dinner at the hotel where most people were staying. it was also the hotel where most of the harley riders, who were convening were also staying. after the dinner the women decended on the hotel bar to drink and cuss with the bikers, two of whom offered us rides home when the brother of the bride couldn't be reached to pick us up.

the next day jh's mom treated the maid of honor and me to getting out hair done and lunch. i love the mother of the bride!

now jh and her family are jewish. pros, her now-husband is not. he is a geologist. so the wedding was an interesting mix of jewish customs with what i usually do for a christian wedding. i gave pros a rock from my backyard during my sermon and told those gathered that since i couldn't speak scientifically about rocks i would speak metaphorically about them.

rocks and marriage have a lot in common. the geologists nodded and encouraged me along. everyone seemed to love it.

later people told me that i could be a commedian if the pastor thing didn't work out. it's nice to have something so solid to fall back on.

not knowing what to wear for the ceremony i borrowed my father-in-law's prayer shawl. with my fancy dress and up do i decided that i was the best looking gentile rabbi i had ever seen.

when we sat down for dinner i asked jh if her grandfather, who is the most adorable man, was going to do the blessing over the bread. she had no idea so i got up to ask. her dad (love him too) cut me off at the pass and informed me that the order would be best man, moh, granddad, and then me. "haven't you hear enough from me already?"

he told me to figure it out... so i did.

"good and gracious God, we give you thanks for this day... etc etc... bless this marriage, make it..."

and then someone at the table whispered "like a rock."

yes, "like a rock... solid... solid like a rock. amen."

and now i must go shower and prepare to go camping in the rain with the confirmation class.

b'shalom y'all


BostonPobble said...

Sounds delightful. I'm glad everything finally worked out. What I want to know is did you take the ride with the biker to get home?

dondon009 said...

A gentile rabbi, how wonderful... and the rock has so much symbolism;
I love it.

The Pobble and I seem to think alike lately. I also was wondering if you took the ride home from the biker!

cats said...

nope, we got a nice ride back with a woman named donna at about 2am. since there were only 2 bikes and 3 of us... it seemed much more prudent if not more fun.

see-through faith said...

loved this...

CrackerLilo said...

Don't you just love post-9/11 security? I'm so glad it worked out.

Questing Parson said...

Sounds as though only one thing could be added -- The Gaither Vocal Band singing "Lead me to the rock that is higher than I."

Great post! You made my day.

Jacklyn Hyde said...

I STILL laugh at that "solid as a rock" prayer! You were a total mensch, my dear shiksa. Love you to pieces.

"and vivian followed."

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