Well, it's time to discuss happier things. Last Saturday I went with Junior and his mom and dad and little brother to St. Joe's for the baptism of their mom's grand-nephew. There were six babies total getting soggy for Jesus that morning.
Junior's mom had a very nice digital camera along to take pictures. I meant to bring my little disposable but I forgot it. It was blazing hot outside, and through some miracle of divine intervention it was cooler in the church than it had been at daily Mass earlier in the week.
Our little angel did not cry during the proceedings. Unlike plenty of other Catholic churches, where the babes only suffer a sprinkle or two, Fr. Ed is a dunker--if he baptizes you, you get wet! Everyone took the babies out of their finery so Ed could plunk them in the font and use his super-sized plastic spout to give them a good drenching from behind (not in the face, of course). The infants all got three showers and got lifted up between each one. There was a three year old who got to stay in her dress and only one ride up over Ed's head. I guess that's his Saturday morning workout!
After the ceremony, which ended with everyone up around the altar for an Our Father--it's the first time I've ever been at a Catholic christening that wasn't a full Mass--all the immediate families got their pictures taken with Fr. Ed. Junior's mom managed to get Ed to stay still for a second photo with her in it next to her niece. I'll call her Judy because that's what it sounds like, but to my horror it's not how you spell it, so I screwed up the card. At the church everybody gave some relative a few bucks--I got a card and stuck a $10 in it, so I figured it was time to hand it in. Later, at the party back at their house, people showed up with gift bags, so I still don't know whether I did it right, but oh well.
We went back to Judy's parents house afterwards, where the men had gathered to cook pig and goat in a huge cauldron out back on the concrete, next to the enviably large gas grill. Junior's dad, Senior, was in charge of the proceedings. I can say that the carnitas turned out great! We had nopales (cactus pads), too. Senior was telling me back in Mexico he used to eat nopales at every meal. I had nopales a few months ago for the first time. These were good, boiled or steamed with something spicy and maybe some vinegar--they were salty/spicy and a little sour, which I like. Underneath that they just taste like generic green vegetable--if I had my eyes closed I'd have guessed they were green beans or something.
They had two very young DJs who were OK but not great. I'll have to devote a whole separate post to the topic of dancing. Come again!
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