Monday, November 08, 2004

“If you build it, he will come.”

The Movie: Field of Dreams, 1989 (Phil Alden Robinson, director and screenwriter, from the novel by W. P. Kinsella)
Who says it: Lee Garlington as The Voice
The context: This disembodied message from an Iowa cornfield convinces farmer Ray Kinsella to plow down his crop and make a baseball diamond.
How to use it: To justify a completely irrational decision.

As I begin the process of settling in, I realize what a crazy thing I've done -- and the effect of this is not to make me regret it, but to make me happier about it, because I think it's going to turn out better than I could have imagined. Something about this place soothes me to the bottom of my soul. I had no idea, living in Los Angeles, how much I missed the rain and the dark green of pine trees.

This quotation occurred to me yesterday when I was reading an article about a big new bridge across the Kennebec River, which just happens to be opening on my birthday (the end of next week). The bridge will take heavy traffic out of downtown Augusta, which is good, but will drop it right onto Route 3, the two-lane road where I had the car accident last Thursday. This article quoted the Mayor of Augusta saying that he expected lots of new housing and businesses in the area just northeast of Augusta, although I hadn't noticed a housing shortage up here -- the reverse, if anything.

It would be too bad if civilization came too far out this way, though. Anna and Tarren live on an unpaved fire road on the southern side of China Lake. China Village, which this area theoretically belongs to, is a two-road hamlet seven miles up the road.

As small as China Village is, it has a beautiful library. I went there yesterday afternoon to hear a lecture by Doug Preston about the 1,000-mile journey he made on horseback, tracing Coronado's search for the Seven Cities of Cibola. Doug writes terrific thrillers and mystery novels, and is a good friend of a good friend, so it was an unexpected pleasure to see the lecture advertised at the local sandwich shop.

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