Monday, August 2, 2010

Travel Treats

"Life is like a box of donuts. You never know what you're going to get."

At least, not in my house. You may think you'll get the powdered sugar one with the chocolate cream filling. But there is no guarantee. Other sweet tooths prowl around my kitchen looking for just such a treat. Only the early bird gets the trans fat.

Perhaps I should explain.

In the last two weeks, I have traveled from southern Louisiana to western Michigan (and everywhere in between). My dutiful little Saturn (turning 11 years old this month!) carried me to a friend's home in DeRidder, LA for a few days of catching up and Cajun food. We talked church, writing, comedy and what makes a good etouffee. We toured the Tabasco factory, saw egrets on Avery Island and ate some spicy Cajun cuisine at a place called DI's in the middle of nowhere. After several days of swam-like humidity, I returned home to Carterville (and its swamp-like humidity).

This weekend, I traveled to Grand Rapids, MI to observe and explore Mars Hill Bible Church. For years, I have listened to their podcasts and followed their journey. So with a couple weeks left on my sabbatical, I decided to climb back into my spacious Saturn for 1,000 more miles of driving. It was a great couple of days (minus the driving time).

But through all these travels, I had been gone from home quite a bit. And my kids were noticing. Usually, when I travel somewhere for any length of time, I bring back a little something for their enjoyment. Not so these times.

But in Michigan, I had an epiphany. Dunkin Donuts! If you must know, they are my favorite. I gleefully clog my arteries for the likes of their fresh donuts. I know, I know, all you Krispie Kreme purists will argue with me night and day. But for me, nothing beats Dunkin.

So I ate a couple for breakfast and bought a dozen for home. I texted a picture of the box to Jody to heighten the anticipation. I put the box on my car's floorboard, protected it from direct sunlight, and kept the air conditioner blowing in that direction (you know, to keep them from melting and going stale). I smelled those luscious donuts for 8 hours from Michigan to Indiana through the whole length of Illinois. Finally, I presented them at home and promised them for breakfast the next day.

You'd think that given the extraordinary lengths I endured to bring them home, my precious boys would have saved my favorite one for me.

But not so. I saw powdered sugar trails all around the kitchen when I awoke and knew right away that I'd have to settle for blueberry. Correction, even the blueberry one was consumed. I ate granola cereal instead.

"Life is like a box of donuts. You never know what you're going to get." Come to think of it, I believe someone else uttered those words long before me. I bet he was smarter than I and kept his box real close.

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