Tuesday, December 21, 2010

In Mourning

I am in mourning.
A few days ago the Provo Tabernacle, the most beautiful building in Provo, one of the most beautiful buildings in Utah, was destroyed in a fire.
I read the articles about it online, and my heart hurt. I watched the video of the news footage with a moving soundtrack of a vocal solo that had just been performed in the Tabernacle, and I wept as if I were watching the memorial service of a dear friend.
Today, Mike and I drove past it as we entered Provo for a Christmas visit to my mom. It was no longer an image on a screen, but a burned out shell right in front of me. Again, I wept from loss.
I know. It is just a building. A pile of bricks, wood and glass.
Bricks that were formed into beautiful walls and 8 sided towers, framing stunning tall stained glass windows, surrounding paneled wood doors, housing a huge meeting hall full of carved pews and lined with strong pillars that supported the balcony which seemed to embrace the room. And, just as you enter, there was the large painting by Minerva Teichert (my favorite 20th century artist) which could be seen even when you were standing at the podium all the way at the other end of the hall.
A building where I attended meetings, and heard words that inspired me, causing me to do things that changed the course of my life.
A building where I went with my sisters, brother and parents to sing Handel's Messiah, and learned to appreciate the sacred music of this season as one of its finest gifts.
A building which the LDS church freely loaned to other churches when they were in need of a large hall for special services.
A building where, nine and a half years ago, we held the memorial service for my father. Because he loved beautiful structures that were carefully and lovingly built through great sacrifice by those who settled the valley. Because he loved places where people could come and hear beautiful music, and hear words encouraging us to turn to God. Because he loved places where people would choose to gather together and find peace and joy.
It can never be the same, and nothing can replace the experiences, but I do hope they rebuild it. Especially now. We need reasons and places such as this to gather.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Lean to the Left, Lean to the Right.

So I was trying to get some artwork done before church, and I had to get to church early for choir practice, and I lost track of the time because I always lose track of the time when I am doing artwork, and I ended up being in a hurry when I was getting dressed, so I let my feet poke around my closet floor to find my shoes and slip into them while I concentrated on buttoning up my blouse. I figured I could do this because I am very good at talking and chewing gum at the same time, just ask Mike.
Anyway, I managed to get myself dressed and to choir practice and then helping with class, when I noticed someone taking a double look at my feet. I glanced down and realized I was wearing unmatched shoes, a left from one pair and a right from another.
Here's the thing - I usually only have one pair of shoes for each footcovering purpose in my life. One pair of dress shoes, one pair of dress boots, one pair of walking shoes. Never have I thought "Oooh, I would love to go and shop for shoes!" It is more along the line of "Shoot, this pair is wearing out. I guess I have to get another pair of shoes". But I was at Goodwill the other day looking for some dress boots because mine have worn out (see above). I love shopping for clothes/shoes at Goodwill because I get to spend most of the time looking for old, really cool books that I turn into artwork, and only a little bit of time forcing myself to look for much needed but less important shoes. I guess someone who has the same size and weird shape of foot that I have must have cleaned out their closet and taken about a dozen pair of dress shoes and boots to Goodwill, because I actually found a few pair that fit perfectly. I ended up getting some boots and two, count them two pair of dress shoes, and my other ones have not even worn out.
So when I let my feet search around for the shoes, and slip them on, I did not consider that there was more than one pair for them to find.
When I mentioned this to a friend at church, she laughed and said, "At least both of your shoes are black. I have done that and not only were they different shoes, but also different colors."
I wondered why I seemed to be tilting a little that morning. But overall, my different right and left shoes got along pretty well.
I hope other things that tilt a little left and a little right can learn to do the same.