It was perhaps the best vacation we have every had…and it was on our honeymoon too!
The week started off as we left the wedding reception in our car just driving…who knows where. The “plan” was to leave Escondido, California (where we were married), drive to Oceanside for our first night together, and then just drive up the California coast as far as we wanted to. We stopped for a time on a beach in the Los Angeles area and then went to a drive-through wild animal park where we saw Lions and Ostriches and Cheetahs walking right beside our car!
Then we drove up to see Hearst castle and then on to Big Sur and Monterrey, where we saw the 17 mile drive and ate dinner on the wharf (steak and lobster…yum!).
Then we went to San Francisco and stayed near the wharf there and rode a trolley car downtown to see a play called Fiddler On The Roof. Here we also ate San Francisco sour dough French bread and cheese at 2:00 in the morning, seafood on the wharf, and Ghirardelli chocolate fresh from the factory…yum! We just wanted to be together and travel and see some beautiful scenery and relax and talk and eat.
Boy did we eat ! I think we both gained about 5 or 10 pounds in that one week !
Then we drove to Lake Tahoe to see the mountains as well as the beautiful lake. It was a beautiful springtime trip for us and everywhere we went the flowers were blooming, the grass was green, and the weather was warm but not hot. And we were SO MUCH in love !
Then to top it all off we decided to go to Yosemite National Park for the last day and night of our honeymoon. Here we were able to rent a small cabin for the night right in the middle of Yosemite Valley. And the top of the top of our trip was being able to get up the next morning and worship our great Lord Jesus together out under the giant trees in the valley. For you see this was Easter Sunday morning and we wanted to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus. What a setting for such a time!
At that time the National Park Service had a small chapel in the Valley and allowed a pastor to come and lead worship. That year they held a time of worship out under the trees at sunrise and then another one in the chapel a little later. Gramma and I so enjoyed the worship under the trees that we decided to go to the one in the chapel too.
Now, before I go any further I need to tell you something about two people who are very much in love. Oftentimes when two people enjoy each other so much they come up with many little funny things that they joke about that nobody else would understand. But it usually means something special to the couple because of all the thoughts and experiences they share with each other.
Well, one of the little things that Gramma used to tease me about was my little tummy. If you know me now you know it isn’t so little. But back then I hadn’t been out of the Marines for very long and I had a very flat tummy. But as we traveled and ate so much my tummy would bulge out a little, and sometimes Gramma would lay her head on my tummy and call it her “paunchy pillow”.
That morning we went to church in the chapel in Yosemite Valley we were in a very happy place in our hearts. And as the preacher began to preach and tell the story of Jesus’ trial and crucifixion and resurrection we were very much celebrating in our hearts. He was very serious and very animated about what he was saying. But when he mentioned Jesus standing before Pontius Pilate the same thought occurred to Gramma and I at the same time … You guessed … it was my paunchy pillow tummy … and I giggled … just a little. But so did Gramma … just a little. But when I heard her giggle … just a little … I knew she had thought of the same thing I had thought of. So I giggled … just a little more. And then she giggled … just a little more. And that made me want to giggle … a LOT more. And that made her want to giggle … a LOT more.
The next thing you know we could hardly contain ourselves from laughing right out loud ! We struggled and struggled to keep it in, but almost burst inside. And we knew there was only a small gathering of people in that chapel, and the preacher was so serious, and the message was so important! But we just couldn’t stop the giggles from coming out. Finally we just had to get up and walk out to keep from totally disrupting the service. But we knew that it still must have bothered others, not to mention the preacher himself.
It was very embarrassing for us. We just hoped and prayed it didn’t hurt them too much.
But I have to confess, Gramma and I not only laughed about it out loud when we got into our car to drive home, but we have had quite a few giggles over it ever since.