I spent this past Wednesday and Thursday night "down on the farm." Brenda, the preacher's wife, drove me down a series of country roads to...well...are you ready for this?
The farm is maintained by Bill and Mary Ellen and when Brenda and I arrived there, a storm was brewing and the power was out.
Bill led me into a big room that includes a kitchen, couches, a bathroom with a shower, antiques, bookcases and a $6,000 television set.
Yes, I typed $6,000.
And yes, I'm sure it's worth that much.
Bill got me a big flashlight to match my smaller one, a pillow and a blanket, too. I sat on one of the couches and listened to the thunder rumbling outside.
Half an hour later, the weather settled down and the lights came back on again.
Bill came back in and introduced me to the largest, clearest TV that I have ever seen in my life.
The screen (I don't know the exact dimensions) spans a number of feet, from floor to close to the ceiling, in all directions.
And when Bill turned it on, I marveled at the picture, which was crystal clear.
I curled up on the couch and watched that amazing screen until I finally fell asleep.
The next day, Bill's wife, Mary Ellen, came down and invited me up to their house.
I sipped a can of chilled Diet Dew, while my laundry agitated in a machine and a young Amish woman washed the windows in the sun room.
"So this is real farm living" I thought.
Mary Ellen has collections of china encased in curio cabinets that stand on a stone floor. The garden outside resembles a full-page spread in "Better Homes&Gardens" magazine. They even have a pond, complete with an aerating fountain and golden Koi.
Bill cut the grass on a John Deere riding mower while cows and horses meandered around behind a fence.
All in all, it had the feel of Green Acres meets modern America.
Eventually I returned to my designated lair and watched the huge TV while I thumbed through an old copy of "MAD" magazine from 1967.
Bill and Mary Ellen open their farm to many Christian activities throughout the year.
I sure enjoyed myself there.
And then, Friday morning (yesterday, as I type this) Brenda returned and took me back to Bluffton.
I will be here, in this mom-and-pop motel, until Monday morning and then I'll return to the road again.
I am grateful that I got a chance to visit Bill and Mary Ellen's farm. And the next time that you cruise down the interstate and you see a farm in the distance...remember what I posted here.
These days, farms include a lot more than a tractor.