Saturday, March 07, 2009

Out of my head

When I was a kid, my father preached on Sundays in La Grange (yes, that La Grange: home of the Best Little Whorehouse in Texas). La Grange was about 75 miles north of our home in Victoria, so we drove up every Sunday morning. The church was a converted house and still had a kitchen and a couple of rooms. We stayed there during the day, and left after the evening service.

For the closing song, we usually sang just the first verse, sometimes the first and last. By that time, people had had enough church and were ready to head for the house. Usually, it was one of these two songs:

Blessed be the tie that binds
Our hearts in Christian love.
The fellowship of kindred minds
Is like to that above.

From sorrow, toil and woe,
And sin we shall be free.
And perfect love and friendship reign
Through all eternity.


God be with you till we meet again,
By his counsel's guide uphold you,
With his sheep securely fold you.
God be with you till we meet again.

Till we meet,
Till we meet,
Till we meet at Jesus' feet.
Till we meet,
Till we meet,
God be with you till we meet again.

Afterward, we kids put our pajamas on under our regular clothes for the the first leg of the drive home. That was to a Texaco station in Schulenburg, where my father bought gas and the station's proprietor, Mr. Helmcamp, gave nickels to us kids for candy. My father told him once, "You can't make any money off us that way." He said, "I don't want to make any money off you."

We peeled to our pajamas as the car rolled through the underpass and slept the long drive home.

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