12.13.2010

C'mon n' Ride The Train (n' ride it...it's the choo-choo train)

Who can resist an opportunity to ride a train?
We can't. They're kind of captivating that way.
Every holiday season a local church puts on a big, well, holiday shindig sort of thing replete with Christmas music, festive decorations, light displays, hot cocoa, kettle corn, funnel cakes, photos with Santa and of course, a train ride. Can you believe we'd never been before? It's sad, but true.
Friday evening we fortified ourselves with a hearty BBQ supper at Joe's (a local fave) because long train rides require sustenance. Or maybe we were just hungry and needed an excuse. Whichever.
Clark Griswold would beam with pride if he saw all the lights on display around their complex. Trust me, many portable generators were humming merrily along and thousands of lights were twinkling.
While we waited our turn we busied ourselves looking at all the decorations, watching the miniature train travel through the miniature holiday village, and writing letters to Santa.
When we saw they had an actual Santa and hardly any line (unlike the mall) we gave in to Annelise's pleas to get her picture taken with Santa. We also obeyed the sign and dutifully paid our $7.50 (inner cringe, but it's the holidays so we coughed it up). I also kicked myself a little for not having the foresight to have Annelise dress up a bit more holidayish, like so many of the other kids in attendance. Oh well. Her t-shirt had a reindeer on it. Once it was our turn Annelise gleefully hoped up onto Santa's lap and started regaling him with her extensive list (at least that's what I'm guessing she told him).
The photographer saw me with my camera around my neck and let me take a few pictures. I wish I had known ahead of time he was cool like that, but I guess it would have been rude to ask for a refund, so we have a $7.50 4x6 keepsake too.
Soon they called our group and we boarded the train. Well, actually we folded ourselves into the seats since they were rather, um, small and toyesque. The train, bless it's little heart, hardly exceeded 5 MPH throughout the whole excursion, but I suppose that gave us plenty of time to take in all of the displays without fear of missing any as we whizzed past.
It was nice though to ride together, admiring all the lights and scenes. They re-tell the Night Before Christmas story but with a religious twist. As the ride goes along you see snowmen, winter scenes, presents and treats...all nice things but still leave you feeling empty and wondering if there's something more important about this holiday season.
As the train ride draws to a close you see signs and displays of the Nativity.Aha! There IS something more important after all. Jesus.
I realize the pitiful way I describe it might make it sound like a freak show, what with the combining of The Night Before Christmas and The Christmas Story and all, but it's really not. It was a fun thing to do as a family and a good reminder of what's most important this time of year.

1 comment:

  1. Ha ha! I did think it was kind of funny that they made the Night before Christmas religious instead of just telling the nativity. Thanks for the clarification. lol! It actually looks really amazing. I love that kind of stuff at the holidays.

    ReplyDelete

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