Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Holy Harmonies, Batman!

Sunday

Jon and I slept through the alarm. We woke up and rushed to get ready for church. Naturally, we had to wait almost twenty minutes for a train. (They come less frequently on Sundays, which I respect.) This snowballed. We had to wait for the correct subway line. And then we had missed to right bus, so we had to wait even longer for it to loop back.

We arrived at church 40 minutes late. We missed the Sacrament. :( The talks were good, though, and the other classes were excellent. They are called a ward, but really they’re a small branch. They were hurting for music. During a hymn, I started trying to sing harmony, and it didn’t work! I listened carefully for a moment and realized the pianist was playing out of the simplified hymnbook. It was sad; “Abide with me” has some lovely subtle harmonies, which were all ruined by the more brute-force major-key-plunking approach. (Not the pianist’s fault, just unfortunate.)

We ran into Will, the former Raleigh Stake Clerk, who also works for Qimonda. He’s the head of their accounting division and is now living full-time in Munich, though his wife, 11-year-old twins, and 8-year-old son are still in Raleigh. He seemed lonely and glad to see Jon, whom he knew from both church and work in Raleigh. He apologized that he couldn’t invite us over for dinner, explaining that his apartment was tiny and also bare of groceries. (He travels a lot.)

I suggested that we meet for dinner at a restaurant, and he liked that idea. He has a car and gave us a ride back to our hotel, which was very sweet since it was on the other side of the city.

Jon and I agreed to spend the rest of the day…resting.

I worked on my blog some, I tried to nap (but it was hot), I determined that I couldn’t get free Internet access even in the hotel lobby (*pout!*).

It was a quiet and relaxing day. My maternal guilt kept increasing, though. I decided to buy a phone card Monday morning and call my boys for FHE Monday night. After that, decision, I felt much better.

Sadly, I still did not sleep well. The pillow and bed were uncomfortable, and the room was hot.


*****
ETHICAL DILEMMA OF THE DAY:

Is it wrong to ride public transportation on the Sabbath, even if it’s the only way of getting to Church? Technically, it requires people to work (drivers of buses, for instance), which is the reason we’re given for avoiding certain activities like shopping.
Personally, I don’t buy the “making someone else work” argument very much. We use electricity, which means there’s a person pushing switches at the power plant. We use water. We listen to the radio, although that is purely passive (the radio would be broadcasting even if a glitch meant it had no listeners that day).

A better argument is not to transact business on the Sabbath. But some people don’t have a weekly card and buy individual fares.

Suggestions?
*****

2 comments:

Jon said...

Once upon a time, people walked everywhere they went. Then they invented towns and cities and had to travel longer and longer distances to their destinations. More was required of their time, too, and it became a limited resource. If we were in a village of only a hundred or so people, it would be reasonable for us to walk everywhere, especially on Sunday. This city is a little larger than that and it would take us hours to walk to church and back. And what about the people who live outside of the city proper? I think that public transit is the least of several evils available to us.

Mom said...

Dad:

I've put enough general authorities on a Sunday plane home to not get too excited about using public transportation on Sunday when it is necessary.

Elder Middleton, a one-time RR of ours, used to get uptight about going to restaurants on Sunday but I noticed the general authorities he visited us with were not nearly that uptight about it.