Stefanella's Drive Thru

Israel, U.S., conflict, war, peace, humor, travel, romance, fashion, fun

Church Meetings July 29, 2008

Last week I was slated to get together with an acquaintance at a Cincinnati church.  It’s where this particular person happened to be on that particular evening so we agreed I would meet her when she finished with her particular business in a back room of the Holy Building.

She gave me the church name & address and I ran a Mapquest search;  the directions put it a few scant miles away from my parent’s home where I’m currently vacationing so I budgeted 20 minutes for driving there on the appointed evening at the appointed hour.

Mistake.  I missed the meeting, missed the acquaintance and had to reschedule.  And it happened because I live in Holy Land Central aka Israel, The Promised Land, God’s Monkey House . . .whatever.

Although I took the directions with me when I set out for my destination, I didn’t take the establishment name.  Mistake.  How many churches could there be? my Tel Aviv dwelling glib self thought. Because in Tel Aviv, non-Jewish places of worship are conveniently concentrated in Jaffa.  So although the port city is somewhat of a navigational headache, it’s not so overflowing with praying spots as to render the area thoroughly confusing.

In the part of Ohio I happen to be visiting however, the setting is not quite the same.  Some long and busy roads host multiple churches; they’re across the street, down the block, down the road and even next door to one other.  The Methodists and Baptists and Catholics and Lutherans have laid claim to a whole lot of real estate in these parts so for someone who has fallen “out of practice” vis a vis churches as an everyday part of roadside scenery, it can get confusing.

I know:  I live in the place where Christianity is rooted.  But surprise surprise, it’s not a place rife with churches.  At least not in Tel Aviv.  Jerusalem and the Old City, that’s a different story.  And even then…

Why didn’t I rely on the street number to find the spot?  That was a head-scratcher too.  The numbers descended and ascended in seemingly illogical order and the distances and gaps between buildings were  broad.  So when I got to 3300, passed 3500 then hit 50, I had no idea where to find my 2350 destination.  I pulled into a Christian Funeral Home parking lot but. . well that did me little good.  And no, I didn’t have my acquaintance’s cellphone number with me either.

A week later I set out with the name of destination in hand and I made it to the meeting sans incident.  As we sat speaking I glanced up at a map on the wall.  “The Holy Land”. . well well.   Familiar terraine.

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