Saturday, December 3, 2016

making me awesome

A fun spot, interesting, busy port, our room. Below, a divided six-lane highway marking I10 East to Pensacola and West to Pascagoula. Wide expanse of Mobile Bay. Tugs pushing barges in each direction, ships in port, battleship USS ALABAMA directly in my vision, I love battleships, my favorite warship, long, gray, sleek, beautiful; and bow-on, deadly ominous. 

A railroad track down and across, and Friday evening a train with diesel engines pulling and a diesel engine pushing a string of well over a hundred cars. Nearly a perfect room. I’ve stayed higher here in this hotel, but near enough to perfect. Don't know what that is, looks like a floating school bus - -

When I come to Mobile I like to stay here at the Renaissance Hotel, as now, and always make my reservation specifically requesting a high room, waterfront, view of the battleship. When we checked in Friday afternoon about three o’clock, the nice desk clerk assured me water view. We came up to room 1214: no battleship in sight, hidden behind a building. I am eighty-gardenia-one years old, and when I say I want to see the battleship I want to see the gardenia battleship, don't alphabet with me, so back down to the front desk and stand there not smiling until they hear me say it: 

“I'm Tom Weller. I asked for a room where I can see the battleship, but you put me in 1214. I want to see the battleship.” But, sir, there are ships in view from your room. “I am a Navy commander, and I want to look at the battleship. Every time I’ve stayed here over the years I’ve had a room looking out on the battleship, the first time February 1985, and several times since. When I booked my room a week or ten days ago I paid extra for a high room and requested a view of the battleship, and you put me in 1214, with no view of the battleship, and I want to see the battleship.” So, fiddle, fiddle, fuss, type, type, scan rooms on screen, fiddle, type and here we are room 2506 where now I am happy because I can see the battleship and you should either pardon my French or lump it, das Gleiche für mich.

I like that shot out across Mobile industrial waterfront at dusk or a bit later, and reflecting back into our hotel room.

Crossing the Pensacola Bay Bridge yesterday on the way over, Linda wanted to stop in Pensacola at Celebration, a shop at Cervantes and 12th Avenue, to begin Christmas shopping. Works for me, lovely old buildings, with a large greenhouse, one was once a florist shop. And an elegant old private home with an elevator. My mother grew up on East Strong Street just a couple blocks away, and every time we come here I wonder if she knew the family who lived here back in the 1920s and 1930s. And I wonder what cars the residents drove and rode in. I'm thinking Packard or Pierce Arrow, maybe had a chauffeur. And there's a tiny servant's house outside just off the back steps. Out front a beautiful plant is blooming, pink flowers, I think a sasanqua.

Celebration must be for ladies, because to me it's second only to spending the afternoon in a fabric store shopping for cloth. Though they did have a bar towel I appreciated:

Saturday morning: couple hours we're going across the street to Christ Church Cathedral where we will present Mike Dickey to +Russell, our diocesan bishop, for ordination as a deacon today and a priest later. I don't know any rules, so by noon tomorrow he should be able to sign it Mike+ and before you can whistle "DIxie" he will be Father Mike.

Friday evening, an unending line of car lights heading over Linda's right shoulder into and out of the I10 Tunnel under Mobile River. Am I reading this map right? Because if I'm reading the map right, that's George C. Wallace Tunnel, twin tunnels for I10 traffic. George Wallace, seriously? The uglily segregationist governor who served his own two terms then ran his wife, who was elected and Gov. Wallace continued governing through her; all going to show that we can fool ourselves into believing we've fooled our own constitution. But seriously, a tunnel system named for George Wallace, so what time are services at St. Judas Iscariot Church - -   

And yep, that's my head and my right ear in the reflection.


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