Saturday, June 29, 2013

Powells: Like Heaven, Only Warmer

In a few weeks, Jon, Katie, Ellie and I will be wedging ourselves into the car between a Costco size box of Z-bars, the whole Redwall series, a giant bag of carrot sticks (because I'm a freaky vegetarian), two hot and sloshing travel coffee mugs and one My Little Pony on steroids (because, dude, my My Little Ponies were never this big*) named Pinkie Pie that says "Hi! I'm Pinkie Pie! Let's have a party! HahaHA! Isn't it exciting! Aren't you excited? Are you? Are you?" in an annoying voice that Ellie absolutely loves because she got it from her best bestie for her third birthday.  (Yes. That glare was for you. Geraldine.) We will then peel out of our neighborhood, windows down, Dora the Explorer CD blaring while yelling, "ROAD TRIP!" at the top of our lungs. Probably a lot.  Because that Dora CD is driving me completely insane! (Side note: Singing along with all the songs on a Dora CD like you're the star in a Broadway musical DOES NOT make it less annoying. It just helps you memorize the words that much faster. Which makes Jon smack you in the middle of the night because you're singing them in your sleep. Again.)

And, while, technically, we're not vacationing in Portland this year, we have found that Powell's is, literally  on the way to every place in the continental United States of America.  And possibly Hawaii. So, we'll stop there, our own little piece of heaven on earth.  Which reminds me of a story:

Once upon a time, when I lived in the land of the Arizona desert, I went to Sunday school.  Which, I did on occasion, when I wasn't out camping in the desert, watching tarantulas as they lazily crossed a dirt road, spotting horny toads camouflaged amongst the sun bleached rocks, and petting cacti. (But only the saguaro, barrel and prickly pear, never the cholla because they. Are. Evil. And stupid. And mean.  And rudely  misrepresent themselves as cute and teddy bear cuddly while they most assuredly are not. Also, it's really hard to get cholla stems out of your pony tail.) Anyway, there I was one summer Sunday, eight years old, sitting in my Sunday school class, shivering in the air conditioned room, when the teacher told us that, today, we would be learning all about what heaven was going to be like. And then she began, imparting her heavenly wisdom to us like a Buddha on a mountain top.

It was going to be beautiful, she said. There would be fruit trees! (Great, I thought, I love grapefruit!) There would be a stream! (Cool! Water bugs! Creek walks!) Birds and flowers! (Cute little cactus wrens! Saguaro blooms!) A light breeze would blow through the flower scented air and, (and here she paused for full dramatic effect, while each and every one of us, perched on the edge of our cold plastic chairs, leaned in just a little bit further) it would be 65 degrees all the time!

What!?!  I thought, flinging myself back in my chair, crossing my arms in disgust.  I don't think so lady. Uh. Uh. There is no way I'm wearing my stupid purple snow coat in heaven.  And, wait a minute. I would have to wear pants. Pants!?! Are you kidding me!?!

And that's when I decided when I died I would have this conversation with Jesus at the Pearly Gates:

Jesus: Welcome to heaven, Martha!
Me: (awkwardly shifting from one foot to the other) Well, see, here's the thing, Jesus.  It's not that I don't believe in you and God and all that, but, um, I don't want to go to heaven.
Jesus: (shocked) But-
Me:  I don't want to hurt your feelings or anything, but it's too cold here.  I think I'd be happier someplace warmer. Like in hell.
Jesus: (looks sad)
Me: But, I could visit you, you know, sometimes, if I got hot or ran out of popsicles or something.

And then I would turn around and skip off to my warm and fiery hell where I got to run through sprinklers, eat popsicles, wear shorts and never ever not ever be cold. And Jesus would be sad, but he'd understand, because he didn't like wearing his snow coat either, but he had to, because his dad said so.

The End

That's a real coffee cup people! A REAL COFFEE CUP!
 You remember your My Little Ponies, it's gotta be steroids, right?


  1. I missed this entry! And this makes me sad, because, hello, awesome!
    1) Powell's. Yes. Just, yes.
    2) Heaven should NOT require a coat!

    1. I'm so glad we both ascribe to the same basic orthodoxy. It makes family visits that less awkward. :)