Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Locusts and a Roadside Diner...

 In 1998 we bought a piece of land on the Penobscot River. It's a parcel that is just under three acres, and we had a cabin built on the lot. It is spartan--not a lake house--too rough and tumble for a lot of people. Wood stove, gas lights, gas cook stove, gas refrigerator, and an outhouse are all the amenities. One more thing...there is an endless supply of running water if you don't mind climbing down the steep river bank.

We love it!

In the past one of our favorite things to do was to go a little south on Route 2 to a gas station/convenience store, that was most famous for its old fashioned atmosphere and great breakfasts. It was a delightful place, and if you were a regular, Denny, the owner took your picture, framed it, and hung it on the wall. Whenever we vacationed at the cabin we were regulars and were esteemed the elite. Our pictures proudly graced the "Wall of Fame." At Burr's, everybody knew your name and your business. When Burr's closed its doors we all sensed we had lost something that could never be duplicated. For at least two years we would drive by the empty lot and sigh.

Ahh, but there is a new place (actually it's an old place) going north on Route 2; my high school buddy, Brent told me about it. I tried it out the day before Justin arrived. Eureka! Honestly, I ate my breakfast, listened to the thickly accented banter of the regulars, watched them take trip-after-trip to the coffee pot and refill their cups (you can keep your own cup there if you choose), and grinned from ear to ear as I took it all in! It is 1950's Americana! The food is great. The servings generous. The appointments are dated. It is absolutely charming! One gentlemen, wearing a green John Deere ball cap--the regulars called him, Beecher, was the subject of the good-natured harassment by the gathering of seven or eight diners. I silently observed for a while, but then I just had to jump into the friendly fray in a joshing manner by taking to Beecher's defense. In a matter of minutes I had Beecher absolved of half the accusations, and won the whole crowd over! I was "in!"

When Justin and I showed up on Saturday morning, the same group was there and one of them said, "Beecher, your Public Defender is here!" The men roared with laughter. His wife cackled, and said to me, "O Dear, you should have joined the Prosecution! The man is a pain in the butt!"

Once again, I bravely stood by my client!

The owner of the place, who also worked the grill, is Barb. She is a jovial person, always smiling, and not at all ashamed to identify herself as a Christian. Her husband was tragically killed at one of the wood mills a few years back. When I got ready to leave and was paying the bill, I started up a conversation of chit-chat with her, and told her how happy I was to find her place. She just smiled and said, The Lawd is good. and He has blessed me. He saved me from a lotta sin."

I lowered my eyes, so she wouldn't see me tear up, and told her that I knew her God. He had saved me too. My life is blessed.

As silly as this may sound, the little hole-in-the-wall restaurant is another instance of God gifting us in a special way. Over the past four years Sandy and I experienced a lot of losses. Significant losses. Now we are in a time when God has determined to "return to us the years the locusts have eaten." Nearly every day some serendipitous event transpires. Some gifting has been nearly miraculous--like a beautiful home to live in with a bass pond, and east/west vistas. Sometimes it's been something as simple, yet no less appreciated, as a little roadside diner in Passadumkeag, Maine.

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful piece. Glad there were no locusts on the menu, although you'd be in good company if you chomped on a few (John the Baptist).