Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Paczki Day is coming ! From the #WilboFiles, Four Years Old.

From the #WilboFiles, Written 2/4/10

Written to a woman we'll call Owl, a friend who travels the nation by bicycle and doesn't own a car and has no plans to ever own a car.

Hi Owl,
It's past Groundhogs Day, and the last message from you arrived as you were celebrating the Winter Solstice. I think it's a good cult and fairly harmless, but every encounter with a Blissfest celebrant has made me wonder what goes into the Kool Aid at Blissfest. I encountered many BF types when hanging out a that songwriter's convention in Harbor Springs MI. Just as Winter Solstice marks the darkest days of the year and Blissfest the brightest, Paczki Day marks the beginning of winter's end and the beginning of Spring's return. Muskegon has several Polish Social Clubs, so it's going to be a big deal ! Should I buy you a ticket? You wouldn't have to dress as a food item !
When I taught school in Hamtramk MI, Pole Town, the school secretary greeted us with a box of the real stuff, from a bakery of Joseph Campau. Even working for a manufacturer just north of Hamtramck, I could count on several boxes awaiting in the cafeteria, not as authentic as the Hamtramck Paczki but still pretty good. This Wikipedia article tells me that there's some pretty hard core levels of Paczki appreciation,, so I want to see how authentic I can get. Maybe I'll bring in a box for all the programmers at work because I haven't marked my birthday by bringing morning baked-goods, and I've been here for two birthdays. So I'm skating. I doubt you are a big fan of Paczki after that trauma at work; plus, you don't eat them cold covered with chocolate syrup.
Paczki Day is thankfully becoming a holiday like St. Patrick's Day, and even Grand Rapids holds celebrations with music and drink. St. Patrick's has a special place in my heart now that I've discovered Fenians, a quirky authentic Irish pub located in Conklin MI. You can get there fairly easy because the Musketawa Trail passes through the town of Conklin, and many cyclist stop there for a bite and "fluids". I really do have to start putting in time there, as if it were a job, because a countdown clock from Guinness keeps track of the days, 77 last I visited there, and the days leading up to St. Pat's are marked by remarkable concerts. The line up looks good: Dervish, Lunasa and Karen Casey. Lunasa will be spending St. Patrick's Day at the White House this year, turning down an invite last year
Plus at Fenian's, the folks are friendly and will chide those who finally deign to show up after an absence. I'm sure the clock is closer to 32 or so. Without the countdown clock's assistance, one cannot be sure.
I'm fairly sure life has brought you some interesting events; I am wondering if the first week of May will find you rolling towards Montana again, where the owls and the ones who stalk them miss you.

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