Winter comes to Greater Philadelphia; Shiny "crunchy" people holding hands

This doesn’t really bear on Orthodoxy, but my other blog is anonymous, and this is geography-specific – specifically, North Wales, Penna., a northern suburb of Philly and home of my most convenient Whole Foods Market (formerly much better-known quantitatively, and IMHO qualitatively, as Fresh Fields), which is barely visible behind and to the (viewer’s) left of this leafless tree, branches coated the way fresh, really wet snow does in little or no wind. I took this around 6 tonight, at which time there was about 1.5 inches on the ground there; no ice, but slippery because of the quality of the snow and no suburban road plowing(!). This was the Phila. area’s first really wet snow this winter, so while driving home from shopping was an adventure of another kind, the region is artificially lit enough that it was very pretty! Glory to God for all things! Most of the snow has already washed away in rain tonight; that’s the kind of winters we’ve been having here lately, whether or not you accept Global Warming Science. (The tree looked even neater in person, perhaps saying something about the capabilities of my particular camera-phone, which shall remain nameless to protect the guilty!)

For you (us) Celts, you might be interested to know that North Wales is in Upper Gwynnedd Township; Gwynnedd is what the Welsh have called much of the region of North Wales in Great Britain since before the English got to it. The girl’s name Gwyneth, as in Paltrow, more closely approximates the Welsh pronunciation of Gwynnedd, but nobody here uses the Welsh pronunciation.

You may know Whole Foods attracts a diverse clientele, from “liberal” to “conservative” in the U.S. – the so-called Crunchy Cons, which may or may not include the very Evangelical Protestant “conservatives” who are into health food, supplements, organic food, etc. OTOH, I was recommended to Fresh Fields by a Catholic friend who lived near the store while I was a Quaker/Mennonite vegan (total vegetarian, ie, eating only plant foods) for reasons of religious nonviolence, in the early-to-mid ’90s, IOW, not at all “conservative” in the common U.S. sense! But the Crunchy Cons’ chief apologist converted to Orthodoxy in ’06. I can’t speak for or against his politics, approach to culture, writings, or anything else – I haven’t really examined them. I try to avoid politics here so this blog can serve Orthodox and inquirers of all political bents – and I assure you I myself am quite bent! 😉 I only mention him because I’m free-associating a little just now. In fact Rod Dreher might be disturbed – I say this with all sensitivity after browsing part of his conversion story and difficult experience of Catholicism – to hear of someone like me who was not only an enthusiastic “Vatican II Catholic,” but a Liberation Theology/”Vatican III Catholic,” and is still of two minds regarding the Catholic Left! (Let’s not go into it. Someday I may finish my “faith journey” post….) Though hopefully not, since we’re both in the Body of Christ now, and I guess both shopping at Whole Foods! (There are 6 in the Dallas area.)

(BTW, I will just point out for inquirers’ sake that although the political blogs “from an Orthodox perspective” that I’ve seen seem associated with the Republican Party of the U.S., many other Orthodox Americans are Democrats. I have no idea of the numerical breakdown or reasons for these facts. My own party registration – if any – is not relevant to this blog. I merely say so because based on the blogosphere, Democrats might think they can’t be Orthodox, when many are. Whether any should be this or that particular party, I also will not venture. Although I’ve read that Orthodox Monastics don’t vote…. )

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