Every year around November, Elder Morton rents a big house, and invites Pentecostals from far and wide to come join him in a festival of preaching and fellowship.
Not everyone gets a room, you have to be quick and sometimes persevere to the point of calling the front desk of the Doubletree (The Radisson for you old timers) every day, but its always worth it.
From the farthest reaches of the Continent, the call goes out and the merry band begins to muster.
Our merry moments began with a car ride to the airport.
When we woke up Tuesday morning and started packing our bags into the car (PDX Airport is over an hour away from McMinnville), we soon found that 7 suitcases plus 3 people don't fit into one Scion xB.
So we packed the car to the brim and sent my mother to rendezvous at the airport, while me and Caleb hopped in my car and sped in pursuit.
During the car ride up, my mom called to make sure I wasn't falling asleep at the wheel, and I remember Caleb looking over at me and replying,
"Nope, I think he's laughing too hard to be asleep."
Caleb and I always have a time.
The flight to Sacramento was pretty uneventful.
Must have been cause I don't even remember it.
But I DO remember landing, riding the shuttle to the car rental, and walking out to be greeted by this beauty...
I like cars for several reasons, one of which is for their size, which is why I purchased a 4-door car.
And also why I love Expeditions.
This thing was niiice.
Black Beauty sucked up all our luggage and we headed off to enjoy lunch in Sacramento.
The Capital Building, home of the State Legislature since 1869.
After lunch and partly on our way to Fresno, we made a pit stop at Stockton.
My parents both went to Bible College in Stockton.
My Mom from '84 to '88, and my Dad from '85 to '88.
You know, during these days...
It all started out so non-committal.
But my Dad (who was called a "gorgeous hunk of male species" by a girl in his year book),
wasn't the only one who had plans for her....
GOD WAS IN CONTROL.
They went from this,
So, back to my story and my reason for bringing up Stockton.
My Mom took us on a drive through memory lane.
First we drove by one of my Dad's old apartments.
And then one of my Mom's.
Really ritzy neighborhood.
2 BMW's and a Mercedes.
I think Pedro is doing more than selling pencils.
We finished the lovely drive from Stockton to Fresno, and my heart leaped within my chest when I spied the Doubletree. So many memories, so many good times.
And they sure weren't over.
It seems that increasingly more people start showing up Tuesday night, which just makes the week seem ever longer and more packed with fun.
Savannah, Olivia, and Cherie
All our friends started trickling in, but there's always that ONE friend that says they're leaving at 8 am sharp.
Then they say they're leaving at 10.
Then 2 pm.
I won't mention her name to avoid any negative repercussions, but we were still waiting come late evening.
So when Cara texted and said she was in the parking lot of the hotel, we came up with a daring plan to completely ignore her when she came in.
Just like the good friends that we are.
Someone tipped her off, and she snuck in the side entrance and made a beeline for her room.
Caleb spied her getting into the elevator, and I jumped up to try and pry the doors back open, but to no avail.
The whole group consequently charged up the stairs in an attempt to head her off at the pass, but we didn't make it in time.
She slipped through security like a terrorist, and barricaded herself behind her hotel room door.
So we being the good ignoring friends, decided to try a little child psychology on her, and planted ourselves outside her hotel room.
We were NOT going to be out-maneuvered.
Caleb, Cherie, Me, and Lindsey
I was practicing my fake smile.
It's not every day you get a welcoming party at your hotel room.
Bro. Wilkins was really happy to see us, he was just feigning exhausted disdain.
Cherie has something over her face HAHAHA
So Cara made us wait, and wait and wait and wait.
YOU'D THINK SHE'D BE A LITTLE MORE LIGHT HEARTED, IT WAS JUST A JOKE.
Finallyyy, she came out and we all were friends again.
Cherie is still the Masked Marauder.
We had it all.
Betrayal, fear, anger, joy, disgust, anticipation and surprise.
And WCC hadn't even started yet.