Eden Hill Journal

Comments, dreams, stories, and rantings from a middle-aged native of Maine living on a shoestring and a prayer in the woods of Maine. My portion of the family farm is to be known as Eden Hill Farm just because I want to call it that and because that's the closest thing to the truth that I could come up with. If you enjoy what I write, email me or make a comment. If you enjoy Eden Hill, come visit.

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Location: Maine, United States

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Water into Wine

I have this t-shirt that I wear sometimes when I'm picking blueberries. It's a plain gray JERZEES shirt, size L if you're curious, but on the front is a picture of purple grapes tightly suspended together with various facial impressions on each grape. The picture is circled with a green wreath with the words "Whip me, Crush me, Make me wine!" Appropriately enough, I was wearing that shirt yesterday afternoon at the American Folk Festival. Marcia and I went on Friday evening and again on Saturday when we attended with our younger son Than. After a mid afternoon lunch of alligator and crawdads, we headed for the Three Rivers Stage where Robert Belfour was playing old New Orleans style blues on a beautiful blue acoustic guitar. Than picked that occasion to wander off and find a toilet with a flush and I was left holding his gallon milk jug of water and his can of Top rolling tobacco. Marcia and I helped ourselves to two of the vacant chairs left behind by festival attendants who weren't sitting in on this particular show and sat through a few long blues tunes before we finally decided Than must be lost in the crowd. Than is 21 for any of you wondering at this point and Marcia is all mother still to him so the task of relocating him became our primary burden at that point.
I ambled around the perimeter of the crowd at that tiny stage, perhaps a couple hundred spectators, when I noticed a middle-aged man standing with his wife looking at me.
"Is that water?" he asked.
Now I wasn't paying a whole lot of attention at that point to what I was wearing or what I was holding in my hands. I was just a tiny bit spaced out by the crowd at this million dollar event, not to mention momentarily focused on my mission of spotting my six foot six son.
"Excuse me?" I asked.
He nodded his head at my left hand where I was holding the milk jug which was about a third full of water. "Is that water?" he asked again.
"Why in fact it is," I responded, looking at my left hand to confirm what he was referring to. I thought he was probably about to ask me for a drink. Maybe he was thirsty in this dry Canadian air that dominated the weekend.
"Can you turn that into wine?" he asked.
"What?"
"Can you turn that water into wine?" He quoted my t-shirt to me.
I haven't told you the whole story. Yes I had on this t-shirt, but I was also sporting a colorful purple, yellow, and white knit cap made in Egypt that I picked up this summer at a yard sale. Also I now sport about a month and a half worth of untrimmed beard, my first beard ever. Add to that the odd-looking, almost Earth Shoe shaped Keen brand unpolished leather walking shoes. One might say I had a bit of a Muslim look to me.
So I thought for a moment about his query... then looked him in the eye moving in a little closer.
"Do I look like a Christian to you?" I asked.
We chatted a moment, then he said perhaps he'd see me a little later and check to see if the color of my water had darkened any. He did in fact see me a little later when I had taken a break from my search and was having a smoke and he commented that it still looked like water. I told him it was my son's water so there wasn't a lot I could do about it.
My son Than later told a joke about water to wine. I'll see if I can recall it.
Than asked me if I know how Jesus turned water into wine. I said I in fact don't know how He did it. Than said he took them out in a dry place and kept them so long in the sun that eventually they all got really thirsty and wined for the water.
Hey, before all you right-wingers start shoving your righteousness up our asses, let me assure you that we are indeed born-again Christians. Just maybe not so "right" as you.

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