Saturday, November 29, 2008

On the road again...

Yesterday, I made the 7-hour trek from Columbia, MO back to Franklin, TN. About halfway home, after finishing up A Thousand Splended Suns on CD, memorizing my sermon text for Sunday, and talking through the sermon, I decided to fire up the ipod and listen to some albums straight through, without the shuffle feature. I mean, how often do we do that anymore with ipods? Here are some of the "albums" I listened to, the people they made me think of and the memories they reminded me of:

James Taylor Greatest Hits: Annual trips to Montreat in that First Presbyterian Church 15 passenger van, John Weicher-he loves James Taylor, driving around town in Columbia, MO as a high school student with this tape playing loudly in my car. While this CD brought back many happy memories of friends and travels and love being showered on me, it also caused a certain yearning in my heart...a yearning for that friend I can call and a yearning to escape to the peaceful mountains of North Carolina. This is one of those CDs I can truly listen to from start to finish and enjoy every moment.

Caedmon's Call/Caedmon's Call: This CD makes me think of seminary, as I listened to it a good bit my first couple of years at Columbia. Anna and I listened to it on our way back to Atlanta after Christmas break that first year. I particularly appreciate Cademon's Call ability to find beauty and meaning in everyday things, like cups of coffee and bus drivers.

Long Island Shores/Mindy Smith: The sweet girl who gave me this CD was on my mind the entire time I was listening to it last night. Those opening notes always take me back to that parking lot where that sweet girl handed me the CD, and our eyes met for a brief moment, and I knew we were headed into "more than two people who hang out sometimes" territory. I was struck by how poignant the first song that sweet girl eventually expressed those sentiments to me as she expressed her own need to change a few things. Such beautiful music, but tinged with sadness.

Red Light, Blue Light/Harry Connick Jr.: Ryan Brown, Molly Nahm, Renee Wenger, and Colleen Reid. These were the people I hung out with most of my freshman year of college when I listened to this CD almost daily. For some reason, it also made me think of a fun snowy day of sledding in St. Louis when I visited some of those college friends over Christmas break. Ryan was there with his brothers, as were Molly and Colleen. It's a cherished memory for me. I remember sitting in my parents' basement during Christmas break that year and listening to this CD while thinking about all of my new friends.

While I do love setting up playlists or simly allowing the shuffle feature to run rampant on my ipod, there's something great about simply allowing an album to play in its the order in which its creators meant for it to be listened. I enjoyed the trip through memory lane for that chunk of highway between CoMo and Franktown.


Heather said...

I did the same thing on my way to FL for the holiday. Radiohead/In Rainbows and Alanis Morissette/Flavors of Entanglement. so great.

Anna Lee said...

just so you know, alan. i read this now. and i enjoy it :]

Kellys said...

I remember when you came to visit St. Louis over Christmas, too. Lots of fun. I saw Renee Wenger at a wedding this past summer and I see Colleen all the time. I never get to see Alan. Miss you, Molly