The temple is being built on a section of my mom's cousin's farm. We were sitting in a hay field all day, which I think is entirely appropriate. I spent so much of my growing up years in hay fields on my dad's farm, and it is symbolic of all the work done by so many people who settled there, and the generations who came after them. My sister-in-law's house is in the mouth of the little canyon just up from the temple site. So, we're feeling rather connected to the whole place.
It's going to be quite pretty, of course, I don't think they make unattractive temples! But what I really like is how it mimics the the old tabernacle (also called the stake center) in our home town of Afton. The single steeple and the square corners bear a strong resemblance.
It was a lovely day, eventually. We awoke to several inches of new snow. But no one was too surprised, because up there in the mountains, it can snow at any time, in any month. But, in a couple of hours that snow had all melted. As I waited there with our chairs, chatting with old friends and new friends, I experienced hail, snow, rain and finally, sunshine. But, seriously, during the ceremony, it was just so pleasant I almost worried about getting sunburned.
Here's one of my favorite public photos of the whole thing:
The dad, on the middle horse, is a dentist who lives there. I chatted with him a bit. He basically became a dentist so he could afford to be a cowboy in his off-work time. He grew up in the cowboy life, a few miles away in Idaho, and wanted to give a rural upbringing to his children. He loves Star Valley, and just thought it would be fun to come on horseback. They had great seats, of course.
This is the view on Friday night, before any of the people came to put up their chairs. Below, is a photo of the shovels, all lined and ready to go. (No, I don't know this kid, but he was as pleased to be there as I was.)
How muddy was it, out there in that field? Well, here's how my boots looked when we got back to my sister's house for lunch. But, we scrubbed them off, and bagged them up and I think I can still wear them. At least I thought to wear boots. I was feeling sad for the girls who showed up in their cute flats.
So, anyway, we had a lovely day, and after a nice lunch with the four sisters at home, two of us got back in her car and drove the four hours back to Salt Lake City that evening. After a short night's sleep, I had a flight home to Las Vegas on Sunday morning at 9:00 A.M. and I walked into my own church at 10:40 to begin playing the prelude music for our ward conference meeting. Whew! (Don't forget that I traveled from Mountain Daylight Time to Pacific Daylight Time--it wasn't a super-sonic jet.) It was a breathless weekend, but totally worth it. I'll plan to stay longer in a couple of years, when they're having the open-house and dedication. The angel-ancestors will be thronging the place, again, I'm sure. I know all their descendants will be!