Years ago, in the midst of a difficult season I came across some books that saved my sanity, Jan Karon’s Mitford series. I call them vacation-in-a-book. The gentle perspective of an aging Episcopalian priest living in a fictitious small town in North Carolina brought peace and tranquility to my heart. Even though the protagonist, Father Tim, lives a far from a stress free life, the grace with which he lives it overcomes any turbulence he may experience.The true to life characters can be found in any parish, and the prospect of a romance for the never married sixty-something-year-old priest is intriguing.
Recently, I have been without a car, a predicament Father Tim prefers. My office is in the historic district of Tinley Park and I often find myself ambling along Oak Park Avenue visiting with small business owners while dodging red and yellow maple leaves from the trees.
I walk to the post office, while passing one of my participating churches and waving to the owners of Kernel Sweetooth.
I stop in to get my hair cut at the salon where they insist that I am much older than I am and continually give me a buffont.
I boost myself up onto a stool at an old fashioned ice cream parlor for a chocolate phosphate and talk about college with the handsome young man home for the summer.
My office door swings open to wonderful characters who make my life so much richer if not more complex. Finally, the mayor’s office calls me for information on an upcoming Love INC coat drive, and I pinch myself to ensure that I am not dreaming. When did I become Father Tim? When did I move to Mitford? How did I never notice? What a dream come true!
What book does your life emulate?