Unexpected Encounters

When  I use the term ‘unexpected encounters,’ I’m not referring to close encounters with aliens (although such an encounter would be unexpected).  I’m referring to places or things you come upon when you are on the way to someplace or something else. In this case, while driving through Groom, Texas, we came upon this giant fifty foot cross just off the highway.

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We weren’t sure what we were going to see when we pulled off the freeway and motored over to the cross (motoring: something the first century disciples were unable to do.)

This little stopover was quite interesting. There were metal sculptures of the stations of the cross. A full length reproduction of the Shroud of Turin. A life sized mount of crucifixion and tomb. It was a refreshing stop on a long drive through Texas and Oklahoma.

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When we left the hotel that day, we were looking at a long drive with little to do but hopefully evade storms and tornadoes. When we left this roadside stopover, we were cheered and encouraged. We could have missed it by just pressing on along our itinerary, but instead we were blessed unexpectedly. I shall look more carefully for unexpected blessings along the way.



Cliffside Castle

Imagine living someplace where you had to travel from room to room by ladder. If you can’t, then you are probably old and arthritic like me. Either that, or you’ve already tried it and not survived to share the experience.

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This particular location is called Montezuma’s Castle, located just southeast of Sedona, Arizona. In it’s day (500 years ago or so) it was a thriving community of cliff dwelling Sinuagua Native Americans. In those days, there weren’t governmental agencies to outline building codes or enforce child endangerment laws. They seemed to do just fine.

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What finally did in this society? Well, the best guess is rapid population growth followed by the gradual disappearance of the local water supply. They tried to blame it on global warming, of course.

Big Hole in the Ground

Meteor Crater. A place I wanted to see 5 years ago when we drove past it. A place I didn’t have time to see then. But I have seen it now.

2015-04-15 15.10.43And here you can see that it’s a big hole in the ground. My first thought was that it took quite an impact to create such a crater. My next thought was that it must have been a very large dog or gopher. I mean, things were bigger in the olden days, weren’t they? In any case, I have now seen the crater, pondered over the power of a meteor hitting the earth 50,000 years ago, and considered the purpose of this big hole on the face of the earth. I would share that purpose with you, but you need to ponder it yourself for awhile first. Also, consider how fortunate we are that no one has ever been asked to fill that hole in to make room for a housing tract. Would anyone buy a house built on the site of a meteor strike? Is it true that a meteor never strikes twice in the same place? Much to ponder.