To repeat what I said in my last blog post, yep, it doesn't get muggy in California. At least, not where I live. We don't need mugginess to make it feel like it's 98 degrees outside, because we actually have 98 degree weather.
Anyway, once Day Two started, Dad, Grandma and I went to the Abraham Lincoln Museum. Mr. Lincoln lived in Springfield for twenty years before moving to some big white house on the east coast, so they have a LOT of Lincoln stuff there. There were mannequin displays of important moments in Lincoln's life, pictures galore, videos and special effects.
The part that most interested me was the collection of anti-Abe material. You know, newspaper articles and comics from the 1800's which talked about how he was basically the worst person ever for plunging the nation into a war that killed about one and a half million people. His critics apparently liked to portray him as the Illinois Ape, a giant monkey with a stupid hat.
It was really interesting and educational. It was definitely worth the five dollar entry fee. The only thing that disappointed me that they didn't have more about John Hay, Lincoln's secretary, but that's only because one of the e-books I edited was written by him.
The Lincoln Museum was great, and I got a cool T-shirt. We spent about three hours there, skipping lunch. Afterwards, I learned that the lunch we skipped was a major event; Bishop Tom was there with Cardinal George. So, basically, I missed out on my chance to meet a cardinal! Oh, man!
We got back in time for the ordination, of course. It was a very big celebration. There were two cardinals, forty bishops and probably 100 priests. Seeing all of them go by was amazing. I even recognized one of them, Fr. Paul, who spent half of his sabbatical at our seminary. It was great to see him again, and very cool to talk to all sorts of priests from Illinois.
It was also good to talk to Bishop Tom for a little bit. He says that people always ask him if there are any other priests in the family, so he mentions me. Well, people always ask me why I want to become a priest, and I tell them about meeting Bishop Tom in November 2008. Tom probably doesn't even remember the conversation we had, but like Dad said, the two of us were like peanut butter and jelly that night, and it really is the major part of my inspiration to join the priesthood.
We were invited to the reception afterwards at the Old State Capitol Building, which has been preserved to look just like it did when Lincoln worked there. In fact, they even had somebody dressed like Lincoln there for taking photos. I am still upset that Mom forgot to put the memory card in our camera, which is basically the same thing as giving us a camera without any film. We could have taken so many good photos!
All in all, it was a grand affair, and I liked it a lot. The plan was to drive back to Chicago the next day and fly home, but the weather had different plans in mind...