Thursday, August 7, 2008

In the Wi-Fi Wilderness

HELP! John has dragged us off into the woods for his kind of vacation. That means we are staying at a state park campground without all of the amenities. Okay, it is beautiful and right on the shores of a lovely Finger Lake and you can fish and swim and watch the birds. But it has no miniature golf, no arcade, no swimming pool and worst of all, no Wi-Fi! But we rode bikes into nearby Seneca Falls and the nearest Wi-Fi hotspot. (Oh, also it's the home of the Women's Hall of Fame which is way cool and has all MY people (I was a Women's Studies minor, after all.) I got all verklempt reading about all these amazing women. Okay, I cried ... just a little.) Sierra was NOT impressed, but that's okay. See, she can take all this stuff for granted, in large part because of the mighty women lining the walls of the Hall of Fame.

Anyway, before we get hauled back off into the Wi-Fi-less wildnerness I have got to tell you about yesterday's visit to (okay, get ready for this) the Jell-O Museum. Yeah, you read that right. And I was afraid I hadn't, but the billboard on the NYState Thruway promised that it was just five miles off exit 41, just 13 miles away from Brockport. I know, I almost couldn't believe it. I mean my younger brother, Josh, spent at least four years at SUNY Brockport and never once mentioned his proximity to the Jell-O Museum. Could it be that he missed this jewel of Americanan kitsch? You might be surprised to hear that the rest of the family was not as excited about this as I was. But hell, they had already stopped me from getting my picture taken with Abraham Lincoln (Indiana), kept me from Carhenge (Nebraska) and weren't even remotely interested in tracking down the world's biggest ball of string. Whiners be damned! We WERE going to see America's foremost tribute to all things Jell-O!

We almost turned back once we got there and found the entrance fee was $4 per person. After all, we had already taken a picture of the bronze plaque outside which commemorates Jell-O employees who served in WWII (I'm not sure if they served by actually serving Jell-O). Wasn't that enough? But boy am I glad we paid (the now tax deductible) entrance fee. Who knew there was that much to know about Jell-O? Certainly our tourguide, Ruthie did. She was a veritable font of Jell-O factoids (although she seemed to be lacking in humor, which one would think would be a job requirement. But Jell-O is a serious business in LeRoy, NY!). Anyway, here's a little gelatine tid-bit for my in-laws: the Jell-O recipe was invented by one Pearl Bixby Wait - and there is some discrepency over whether his name was actually spelled Waite. Folks, we could be related to the genius who discovered that the connective tissue of bovines and swine (that whole thing about horses' hooves is apparently nasty rumor) could be made into a delicious food-like dessert! (Fear not my Jewish readers, Ruthie informed us that there is Jell-O available that "meets the dietary restrictions of those of the Jewish faith!")

Alls I'm saying is I can rest a bit easier now. Whatever becomes of my writing career, the Wait(e) name has already been ensured a place in history. (It may, however, dissolve in boiling water!)
Well, back to the woods now.

I'll keep you posted,

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