“I’ll go to an early dinner without complaining…” Granny bargained.

Another family was sitting in our seats at the Easter service. You know what that’s like in church… I imagine it’s the same at temple, mosque or whatever… that’s my real estate for the service.

Doesn’t matter I haven’t attended in several months. My dad sat there and now my bottom belonged on that length of board. HRRMPH.

I headed to sit further back. It was Easter, so the church was getting crowded, even though it was the first service.

“Nooooo…” said my mom (Granny). “I want to sit up front.”

“Oh, gawd no. Please.” I turned into a back pew.

“We’re going on this cruise later this month” she wheedled. (It’s one of those short three night repositioning ones. On on Friday off on Monday.)

“We can go to dinner as early as you like. Whenever! I’ll trade you a front seat now for an early dinner later.” She beamed.

I loathe waiting for tables to become ready during the dinner hours on Princess. They call it “Anytime Dining”. Liars.

If you don’t get there when they open up at 5pm, you get to wait for an eternity. If not having an argument meant sitting up front for 90 minutes… well… I turned and headed for the front.

“Oh, damn,” she said. “Hello, 4:30 dinner. I didn’t think you’d agree.”

Beloved, who witnessed this exchange, grinned. She hates waiting, too. Also, if you eat at 5 you have a shot of decent seats at the second show… and we generally eat pretty early regardless. It works for us.

“Only one night!” Whispered Granny as we sat down. Then, to herself: “I know I can handle dinner at 2:30 one afternoon, I know I can.”

Sitting there, waiting for the service, I was suddenly aware of.. well… someone passing gas. Quietly, but consistently.

I eyeballed Granny. “You okay?”

“Fine, deah, why?”

“That’s not you…?”

She looked a bit cross. “What are you talking about?”

The noise now resembled less like gastronomic distress and more like a Bronx cheer. Gazing around, I noticed the trumpety trio sitting by the choir stalls, waiting for the service to start. One of the musicians was… exercising her mouth in preparation, I guess.

Problem is, she didn’t realize we have a “sweet spot” where you can stand and sing and the acoustics of the church are such that anything you utter is magnified.

Throughout the church.

BWRRRRRRRAAAAP she softly blew through her vibrating gob.

A few other people were casting furtive glances at their neighbors, wondering who, exactly, was doing the deed. In church. Just before service. When we start off with a rousing hymn, deeply breathing to howl the allelujahs.

Okay, okay, we’re Episcopalians. Howling allelujahs is on no one’s agenda. Except maybe mine. Everyone else engages in sedately singing.

Mercifully, the prelude started up, as did the trumpeter. Yes, indeedy, it was her warmups we were listening to.

The music in the service was beautiful.

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