Friday, September 11, 2009

Land of Mormon: Part Two

As we're driving, we see a big lime green trash truck on the side of the road. The sign on the side truck reads, "Got Crap?" Mom asks if that means it's a shit load.

Sorry, it was so funny and I couldn't resist.

We roll into Salt Lake City around 6:00 pm. We're planning to go see the Tabernacle Choir practice in the heart of the Land of Mormon. But since we have time for a bite, we head over to One World Cafe.

Their philosophy is -- everybody eats, nobody wastes. They have little slips of paper with amounts on it. You pick the amount you can afford and that's what you pay. If you can't afford anything, you select a special piece of paper that entitles you to soup or rice. The owner/head chef/manager/server/bus boy Giovanni Bourberbal is a gem. This man has talent in the kitchen. There's not a microwave or a deep fryer in sight, nothing frozen, and the cafe even grows some of it's own food. It's organic, free-range ... and absolutely delicious. For $10, Mom, Grandma and I share a heaping plate of delicious yams, quiche, beef stew, brown rice, kale & cabbage, zucchini and more. I recorded audio, so check out the story soon.

Then it's on to Temple Square, where we discover that the choir is in a private recording session this evening. Mom says it was the same story when she was here ten years ago, so I'm starting to think it's a Mormon conspiracy.  Get them in the door and recruit ...

That thought is only intensified by the fact that every Mormon at the facility we pass greets us with huge smiles and unnatural warmth. I think they need to lay off the Kool-Aid a little. The women are perfectly coiffed, with pearl earrings and long straight skirts. I keep pulling my own skirt down over my knees and a failed attempt at modesty.

We stop by the genealogy archives. Mormons have an extensive database where I'm hoping to settle an ongoing argument with my father by perusing. He insists we're not Polish. Dad, I hate to tell you -- in the 1930 census records, Nellie, your grandmother, listed Poland as her place of birth and Polish as her native tongue. 

I win.

When we leave, I tell Mom I'm thinking of converting. She tells me I wouldn't be a Mormon, just a moron. Grandma says we should watch it, and I tell Mom to duck -- here comes the fire (Secretly, I think her hearing aids have a special "selective hearing" setting. She can hear us just fine ... when we don't want her to.) So I turn around and start signing the conversation for her. She doesn't think I'm funny and says she doesn't have her hearing aids in. Mom and I start shouting the conversation at each other, and Grandma says we don't have to yell.

We're laughing so hard as we get back on the highway that I feel I can make it another hour toward Idaho. The greatest thing about family is that you can feel like you want to kill each other one day, but are laughing your arses off TOGETHER the next.

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