1800 miles later…
I’m back home after my jaunt (Can you really call 1800 miles a jaunt?) to Texas. Saw family in Dallas and friends in Waco. I made new friends in Brownwood. Spent a small fortune on gas. (Which makes me wonder – why aren’t we drilling for oil here????)
My time at Howard Payne University was terrific. Monte Garrett and his students did a wonderful job on Tuesday night in a concert of my anthems. The audience was receptive and warm – even when subjected to me singing. (Texans are kind people.) My time at HPU reminded me that the world of Southern Baptists is very small, indeed. Everyone I met knew someone I already know somewhere else. In fact, one of the first faculty members I ran into, Greg Church, sang the role of Joseph in my premier of “Two from Galilee” at Southern Seminary, way back in a previous century.
So – a heartfelt “thanks” to Monte, his students, and the folks at HPU. Thanks for your hard work and hospitality.
My visit to Waco was fun. I was there officially to attend a meeting of the board of the Center for Christian Music Studies. Unofficially, I managed to catch up with some old friends. Mark Nalley and I hadn’t seen one another in decades. He and I had a jazz band in college – “Night Flight.” (Groovy, huh?) Mark went into public education and has already retired! (I chose the wrong path, it seems.) I stayed the night with my old roommate, Wiff Rudd, and his lovely wife, Jeanette. I had lunch with another old friend – Jim Thompson, who somehow never ages. Not sure how he does that.
I drove by the first place Cindy and I lived in as a married couple. Hasn’t changed at all. I went by the famous “W” building – the original home of Word Music, where Cindy worked as a telemarketer, and I hung about snagging free-lance work from Kurt kaiser and Charlie Brown. Somehow, the building shrunk, because it’s not nearly so formidable as it seemed when I was in college. Word was HUUUUGE, wasn’t it?
Perhaps just as important as all the time with friends, I managed to score some true Tex Mex food, real BBQ, chicken fried steak, and one of my big sister’s homemade chocolate cakes during my week to the Promised Land.
So, all in all, I’d say it was a success.