Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Liturgy of Hours

I'm learning many things here in Wyoming:

1. I don't like peacocks.
2. I do like big cities.
3. I like funeral masses to be, oh, under 3.5 hours.

Yes, 3 and one-half hours! This is not including the fact that the mass was an hour late to start, and then had 3 eulogies, 2 poems, Indian drumming, dancing, some Indian songs, and, yes, the Eucharist was thrown in there somewhere.

It betrays my own cultural background to say that, with my family, were a funeral mass to begin an hour late and then run 3.5 hours, there'd be a nuclear war waged and blood would pour freely...and then, when my mother calmed down, we'd probably have an opportunity to vent a little bit.

Truth be told, it was an interesting experience. The Indian funeral ritual is particularly elaborate, involving the funeral mass followed by a viewing of the body (today, 2.5 hours) [If you're keeping track, starting at the scheduled start time of 10:00 in the morning, by the time we viewed the body it was 2:30 with the viewing lasting until 5:00]. Following the viewing, we took the body up to the mountain-top burial ground (good view) where we commended the body back to the earth. Then there was the face-painting with war paint (the Avon lady would not approve of the grease-paint put on the clogs pores), drumming, a feast, and a give-away where the family members give the attendees presents (blankets, baskets, Pez) for attending the funeral.

It's now 7:00 and I just walked in. I'm tired and greasy and need to take a shower, but I thought I'd post this to show everyone that I am immersing myself in the culture.

Oh, since I totally shaved my head on Friday (BIC!) I've changed my name to: Ryan-rubbed-smooth-by-raging-river. The loincloth just wasn't doing it for me any more.
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