Wednesday, December 8, 2010

A Slice of Rural Southern RV Life on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception

Today is the feast of the Immaculate Conception, when Catholics celebrate the day Mary was conceived in the womb of her mother, St. Anne, free from Original Sin.  Mary is the only person in human history to be granted this gift. 

Many Catholics mistakenly believe that the Immaculate Conception refers to the day Mary conceived Jesus in her womb.  Simple math proves that this could not be correct.  The Immaculate Conception is celebrated on December 8th and Christmas on December 25th.  Mary would have had either the longest, or the shortest, pregnancy in history!  Of course, Jesus’ conception in Mary’s womb is honored on the feast of The Annunciation.  It is celebrated, appropriately, on March 25th.

Today I had an occasion to call on Mary in her role as the Immaculate Conception.  While we wait for a new house to be built, we are living in our RV, which presents many challenges in the winter.  Although our RV is roomy, cozy and built for four seasons, we can’t keep water outside from freezing.  Since our campground is “down in the holler,” temperatures are often colder than the surrounding areas. Unfortunately, it has been so cold that the water froze inside our hose as well as in the spigot to which it is attached.  We quickly depleted the water in our tank, and I had to find a way to thaw the hose to get more water despite the fact that the temperature was still below freezing.

As is the case in situations where I need help, I mentally searched for a saint who could assist me in getting running water.  I quickly thought of St. Bernadette and the miraculous water in Lourdes.  Then it occurred to me that Mary told St. Bernadette, “I am the Immaculate Conception.”  After praying to both Mary and St. Bernadette, I was confident that I would have running water.  I bundled up and went outside to check the hose.  It was still frozen solid, but I spied another hose we use occasionally, lying under the RV.  It had only a little ice in it, which boiling water quickly removed.  I connected it to the RV and filled the tank, grateful for the heavenly assistance.

I had just enough time to wash the dishes before heading out to watch my son’s swim meet and then take him to Boy Scouts.  During the Scout meeting, I headed to the gym, not to work out as usual, but to take a long hot shower.  By the time I returned home, the water would be frozen again, and I needed to save the precious water in the tank for morning.

As I stood under the hot water, I heard the voices of a bevy of young swim team girls as they converged into the shower room. 

Girl #1:  Jasmine, do you have a pool in your back yard?

Jasmine:  No, but we’ve got a creek.

Girl #1:  A creep?

Jasmine:  No!  A creek. C-R-E-E-K.  My daddy says he’s going to make us a pool in the creek next summer.

Girl #2:  Every time my daddy says he’s goin’ to do somethin’ awesome, he never does.

Girl #1:  Hi Brittany!  How come you’re always the last one in the shower?

Brittany:  I don’t know.

Girl #2:  Well, who do you talk to since everyone's done?

Brittany:  I don’t  know.  Myself, I guess.  I just like to sing too.

(I was never treated to Brittany’s singing since Girl #1 thoughtfully lingered to talk to her for a few minutes so she wouldn't be left alone.)

Girl #1:  Brittany, are you going to church tonight?  (Southern Baptists go to church on Wednesday nights.)

Brittany:  I don’t know.

Girl #1:  Well if I don’t see you at church, then I’ll see you tomorrow!  Bye!

Brittany:  See ya!  Bye!

I like to think that the Blessed Mother enjoyed eavesdropping on this delightful, innocent girl talk as much as I did.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Touching and enjoyable as usual.