Ezekiel 4:9

Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes, Death Valley

When I first began coming to my in-law’s cabin, I stirred up a breakfast cereal controversy. I liked Cocoa Puffs, which my mother-in-law thought was simply horrid. While maybe not as healthy as the rather bland and tasteless cereals that they preferred, I liked it and in the scheme of things, what is really all that awful about chocolate frosted sugar-bombs anyway?

Take wheat and barley, beans and lentils, millet and spelt; put them in a storage jar and use them to make bread for yourself… – Ezekiel 4:9

Anne and I were in Meijer’s yesterday, working our way through the shopping list, when we came to bran. Harry had asked for it and had just written the word bran. When we got to the cereal aisle, we spied boxes of Food for Life’s Ezekiel 4:9 Sprouted Cereal for sale. Maybe if you find yourself lost in the desert for forty days and forty nights, it might be a good idea to have a bowl of it. I mean, how much more inspirational can you get, then by quoting the Bible, chapter and verse? We thought of getting some for Harry, just to see his reaction, but it cost twice as much, for a box that was half the size of other brands. In the end we decided not to and got raisin bran and not just bran. Hang the expense. 

Today, Anne went to town to do yoga and I went for a bike ride. I rode out to the lighthouse. On the way out, I rode through where the 6 mile construction crew had constricted traffic down to one lane. I almost made it through the mile and a half, before cars began coming the opposite way. I ducked into the closed lane.

I got to the lighthouse just as the Soo Locks Tour Boat, which was doing its regular Wednesday run out to the lighthouse and blew me a master’s salute. On the way back I first stopped at the Dancing Crane for a little latté. I again navigated the construction slalom and again couldn’t make it to the end before the other cars began coming at me. Another cyclist going the opposite direction had just made it through in time.

I stopped at the Bay Mart store in Brimley. Going in, I noticed a sign on the door that read, “Cyclist, please remove your helmet.” Figuring that the sign was for full face masked motorcyclists and not bicyclists, I didn’t take mine off and I thought I detected a look from the clerk, but it must have been something else, because he greeted me warmly with the news that tomorrow they will stripe 6 mile. Plans are to have a bike lane for the entirety of the newly paved road. 

Monterey Sea Otter

Monterey Sea Otter Feeding

Monterey Sea Otter Feeding

The other day, Anne and I toured the Monterey waterfront. We started at Fisherman’s wharf and walked to Lover’s Point and back. We saw the San Salvador, which had just docked that day. I missed the Spanish galleon that was part of this year’s Great Lakes tall ships tour, so it was good to see this vessel. We were originally planning on seeing the Monterey Bay Aquarium, but our slow sojourn along the coast, ate up all of our time. We took our time and observed the abundant marine life, including this otter. Later, we observed two marine biologists who were also watching the otters.

Anne and I went to church with Dad. We first visited Mom’s grave. He attends San Carlos, the oldest and  smallest cathedral in California. Presiding over Mass was the retired bishop. His homily was a riff on the day’s gospel, Luke’s story of the rich man and Lazarus. In this story, Lazarus the beggar is turned away from the rich man’s house. Eventually, they both die and have to face judgment. Lazarus is admitted into heaven, but the rich man is denied. The rich man first pleads to Lazarus for relief, but is again denied by God. He then pleads on the behalf of his five brothers and is again denied.

In his homily, the bishop told a personal story. He had just lost his iPhone while golfing. It had fallen out of his pocket on the course. Here he digressed and talked about the quarterly solicitations to Catholic charities. He had just given, when yet another solicitation had arrived. Returning to the clubhouse, he again noticed the young men, mostly Hispanic, waiting to caddy. It turns out that one of these men had already turned in the phone. The bishop decided to then and there make another donation in the name of his sixth brother.

Try not to be such a heathen

Montreal's Notre Dame Cathedral - Exterior

Montreal’s Notre Dame Cathedral – Exterior

Overheard on the front steps of Montréal’s Notre Dame Cathedral, “Try not to be such a heathen.” This was said by a mother to her son, who had just expressed his opinion that the holy water was gross. We decided to stay another night in Montréal and took full advantage of the layover. This morning, we bicycled downtown into the old quarter, beating the crowd. It was much cooler today than it was yesterday. We toured the cathedral and lit a candle for Mom. Afterwards, we checked out the upscale art galleries in the quarter. I didn’t break anything, so I didn’t have to buy anything, as if I could afford any of it. We had a light lunch and then launch out away from the ever swelling and always maddening crowd of fellow tourists. Across Montréal’s harbor and in the middle of the Saint Lawrence River sit two islands, Sainte Hélène and Notre Dame that were the site of Montréal’s Expo. They are connected to the city through bridges with separate bike paths. We rode out to them and then along the Formula 1 racetrack that was not then in use. Vestiges of the expo survive. The most famous of these is the huge geodesic dome that was a landmark for the event. Our tour of these island parks would have been idyllic, if not for the sound from the heavy metal concert that was being held there too. We tried to avoid the concert venue, but all roads seemed to lead towards it. Eventually, we bailed and headed back to the mainland, which was even more crowded than when we left it. Somehow, we made it back to the hotel. After freshening-up, we headed out to dinner. We headed up to Duluth Avenue, which we had perused on an earlier night and ended up at Areqera, a Venezuelan restaurant. The food was good. Tomorrow, it’s on to Quebec City.

Montreal's Notre Dame Cathedral - Interior

Montreal’s Notre Dame Cathedral – Interior