Sunday, April 26, 2009

Excerpt from unnamed autobiography

...I do remember with fondness long summers in St. George (even though most summers were spent away while both mom and dad worked feverishly on advanced academic degrees). The Virgin River provided many hours of cool, fun, play even if it left our white underwear permanently stained the color of red sandstone. Just over the black ridge east of St. George was Russia. It took some time but we finally got there and had a good time doing it. The perfectly aligned East-West dirt roads (we lived on a corner) would turn to silt during the many months of drought and provided entertainment that left us coughing up mud balls. It was always peaceful along 600 South. Neighborhood wars developed in the heat of the summer. Along 600 South if you lived East of 500 East you were the good guys. If you lived West of 500 East you were the enemy. Doug and Dexter Hannig, twins from two houses up the block, led us. They were the strategists and tacticians with access to weapons. They even had a chemistry set at their disposal. During one skirmish I had just poked my head up from behind a dirt mound to see what the enemy was planning when, thud! My open left eye took a direct hit from a large clod! I ran home crying, but eventually I recovered. I was redeemed one day later when I carried a 2x4 into battle and chased a young man (5 years my senior) down dusty 500 East all the way to his home. I was a hero for the rest of that day...

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Melon tours MRO Show via Star Wars

Last Sunday Shauna dropped me at the St. George airport and I mounted my mono-jet (pictured below) Rolls Royce RB211. As I straddled this thing and fired it up I dreamed of trouncing young Luke Skywalker on my 60,000 lb thrust mono-mount while he piloted his twin engined pod racer (with 17,000 lbs of thrust each). I arrived quickly to the Gaylord Texan Resort and deployed the Wencor landing craft smartly over the top of these suit-clad business people. It was all down hill from there -- eat, talk, sleep, repeat.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Audience Confusion

Lately, Melon Tours has been confused at what constitutes a "tour" and what thoughts or experiences are worth passing along, and to whom these musings might be passed along!

Melon Tour's writers have not resolved this dilemma but have decided to continue the blog with some old, benign, uninteresting words to fill the void until real tour insights can be defined.

Keep in mind that new "angles" are hard to find and that some "touring" has been on roads "well travelled." Nevertheless...

What is "quality?" Often referred to as verb it is nevertheless a noun and without a qualifier, or adjective, it has no substantive meaning.

Pirsig in "Zen, and the art of Motorcycle Maintenance" set out to create the metaphysics of quality -- to explain the connection among quality, morality, and reality. I read the book a couple of times. It has some interesting thoughts but never quite gets to a satisfactory conclusion. His search is interesting though.

Anyway, I spent a Saturday working on my motorcycle to great satisfaction. I enjoyed the quality time we spent together modifying and maintaining to a "form, fit, and function" of equal to, or better, than OEM specifications. You see, to adequately define a level of quality, one must have some kind of standard or specification.

Sometimes you just know it when you feel it and you have to proceed on faith!

Last Friday this group entered the St. George Temple -- Erin for the first time. It was nice. Afterward we retreated to Iggy's for dinner. We visited well into the evening. A good time was had by all (lots of "quality" time!).

Sunday, April 12, 2009


This morning, after preparing for a Sunday school lesson, I had the idea of posting "El Espolio" -- a painting of Christ (just before crucifiction) by El Greco. Linc gave me the idea when I found various paintings of Christ and the resurrection on his blog .

This large Altarpiece by El Greco made quite an impression on me when we visited the Toledo Cathedral in Spain. But, as I gazed upon it this morning, it started to dampen my spirits. The expressions and mood of the the painting were undoubtedly conveying its intended message, but in the end I wasn't up for it.

I found a reprieve and a lighter, brighter solution in the hymn, "He Is Risen." So, instead of El Greco's 1577 work "El Espolio" Meet my Sunday school class.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Los Sacerdotes

Melon's semi-annual tour to an A-frame meeting house in North Salt lake with Luke and Clint took on Grandpa Atkin last Saturday. After picking Clint up we nabbed Grandpa at the Marriott in downtown SLC. Then, after capturing Luke we continued the tradition of having the oldest of the bunch buy dinner. Grandpa sprung for the burgers, fries, and refreshment before we hunkered down in the A-frame and listened to the wisdom of latter day prophets.
The Priesthood session lessons are usually packed with anecdotes intended to capture the attention of 12 to 18 year-olds. Fortuneately this plays into the hands of our crowd as well. We heard stories of Lockheed L1011s, Commanche Helicopters, New cars, Army Rangers, and rodeos. So, Grandpa and Clint only took short naps. All of this interwoven with the principals of preparedness, empathy, charity, and service made for a memorable evening for 3 generations of sacerdotes.