Among friends

First, before I prattle on about my own evening, I have to say that I’m scratching my head over two separate Facebook posts I saw tonight. My oldest niece, Jacey Tucker, posted a photo of her left hand, with a new piece of jewelry. Meanwhile, her longtime boyfriend, Robbie Sciler, posted “She said yes!” to his Facebook wall. I’m sure these two posts, taken together, have some sort of significance. I’ll have to investigate further.

I would welcome Robbie to the family, but we’ve really considered him part of the family for several years now. This just makes it official.

Anyway, changing gears, Mountain T.O.P. is having an Adults In Ministry weekend starting tomorrow night. Several of the participants, friends of mine, decided to come to Tennessee a day early so that they could see Lynchburg and visit a railroad museum in Cowan. As it happened, the bed and breakfast they found when making their travel plans was Clearview Horse Farm just south of town. So I had dinner tonight at Bocelli’s in Shelbyville with (clockwise from left) John VanDuzer, Craig Wright, Jan Gohl and Sonya Goold.


I’m taking a day off work tomorrow to join the four of them, plus Marge Kollar, in Lynchburg, where we’ll tour the Jack Daniel Distillery and (at my suggestion) eat at Miss Mary Bobo’s, the former boarding house which is now run as a family-style restaurant by the distillery.

We will be joined at Mary Bobo’s by Gail Castle. Gail, who was Gail Drake when I first met her, is a member of Mountain T.O.P.’s founding family, used to run the AIM camps, and was also the co-founder of LEAMIS, the group with which I take my foreign mission trips. She now works as a fund-raiser for the animal shelter in Winchester.

Gail and I wound up in a Facebook chat some weeks back and when I mentioned my plans in Lynchburg with the Mountain T.O.P. folks, she wanted to be there. Gail and I had originally planned to keep her participation a secret; she was just going to show up tomorrow, which would have been awesome. But the group started asking about Gail last week, bemoaning the fact that, now that Gail has closed her business, they didn’t have an easy way to stop by and say hello to her on their way to camp. I was afraid they’d call her and that she’d be put on the spot, so I suggested we go ahead and spill the beans.

After what is sure to be a wonderful meal at Mary Bobo’s, the campers will head on to Altamont (by way of Cowan, so that Craig can see the railroad museum).

Should be a fun day. I only wish I were going on to camp with the group.