Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Weigh Guns, Ho! Bo.

I love living in Hawaii, I really do. I didn't at first, I admit it. It was hard to leave my friends, family and familiarity but I made new friends that are almost like family and everything here now feels familiar. There are times, however, when the homesickness bug sneaks back in. As I prepare to return to Utah in two weeks I am feeling especially nostalgic, so when my sister called me and told me about my family's mini-vacation to Salt Lake City I was downright jealous.

My brother, Richard, is attending college at Southern Utah University. He had planned to move home for the summer so my family set aside last weekend to travel south and help him move out. At the last minute Richard had a job interview and decided to wait and see if he got the job before moving his life's belongings 300 miles. Unfortunately, my mother had already gone to a fair amount of trouble to obtain a substitute for her Relief Society class on Sunday so, of course, she could not attend church at her ward. Instead, the whole fam headed north for a tour of historic Salt Lake City.

Their first stop was at the old ward house of my parents when they were first married. Then, off to the temple visitors center. On the way there, a homeless man approached my family (still dressed in Sunday best) and asked for some money to buy beer. When denied, the man became indignant. He started yelling at my family "What kind of missionaries are you anyway??? I know what you teach!" He whips out a tiny mini-bible out of his back pocket. "I know this thing backward and forward!" My dad then stops, turns and says to him "Hmm, I'd like to hear it backward." The hobo (as all vagrants are referred to in my family) then took a dollar out of his pocket, threw it in Tori's face and said "This isn't about money. THAT is what I think about money little lady!" and turned to walk away. My family crossed the street and when they looked back, the man had picked up the dollar.

At the Beehive house, they had one of the sweet sister missionaries from Canada give them a tour. Throughout the tour of the pioneer home, the missionary told them that some of the original furniture still in the house was made from old boxes or crates that the pioneers had brought with them across the plains. In the dining room the sister turns to my family and asks enthusiastically,

"Can any of you guess which piece in this room was made from a weigh gun?"

My family is confused. Apparently being Mormon our whole lives isn't enough to prepare you for such specific church history questions. Everyone is stumped. Everyone, except David (15), who is pointing out piece after piece, eager to get the answer. Picture frame? Nope. Glass vase? No. Salt and pepper shakers? At this point the missionary is confused as well. Tori, unable to take the shame of David knowing something she does not any longer asks:

"Uh, what is a 'weigh gun?'"

The missionary, with a look similar to that given to pregnant women who insist on wearing their belly rings full term, answers:

"The things with the big wheels?"

Still not getting it, David continues naming things made of glass, ceramic or dried flowers and Tori continues to fume in her confused state of rage. My mom leans forward and whispers "I think she means 'wagon'" and at the same time, my dad says "the table?". My whole family loses it and the missionary, I am sure is now convinced she has met the dumbest family in the entire world.

On the way back on Tracks, my family meets another hobo who asks to move in with them. Really, this is understandable. I am sure he, and the previous hobo, assumed that my family is sympathetic to hobos, as they appeared to have one traveling with them.

Below is a picture of my brother, Richard, taken today. I wonder if he got that job?


richnbritt said...

Meg I completly understand what you mean about being fine with living here and then something happens with family and you get completly bummed.

Steffy said...

I laughed SO hard at the picture of Richard! He looks so different with his hair like that! I love your family so much! I can picture everything you wrote about happening!

Claudia said...

Wow, I was laughing out loud so hard! And then when I saw Richard's picture, I busted up. Adam was wondering what was going on. I love your family. Good stuff. I still remember that animation thing Richard did with Johnny in high school. "Johnny Befriends a Hobo." Well, I think it might be safe to say that Johnny befriended a hobo wanna-be.

Meg said...

Claudia, you should see Johnny. It is waaaaaaay worse. His beard is HUGE and full. Richard's is scrappy but Johnny, well, that boy can grow some hair!

Erin said...

Laugh out loud...laugh out loud. I was grace by hobo-Richard. I didn't recognize him at first and thought he was a lost mountainman returning for his GED. My relief when it was only a hobo!

Malia said...

meg, you crack me up :) you should be a writer...i'm glad you're doing this blog....

Angi said...

I am crying, seriously, crying that is the most hilarious story ever. No wonder the tourists you see at temple square look confused