Memoirs of a Hayseed Physicist by Peter Martel

Part 17:
In The Beginning:
I have neglected to mention some “moments of beauty” that entered my life at this time. These “moments” can also be found in a memoir by George Simenon, who described how much pleasure it had been serving as an altar boy for mass sung in a convent school. His experience was very similar to mine, but I would wager that mine was more intense, especially in winter. From grades eight to ten I would get up every weekday morning to serve at the six o’clock mass in the convent. In winter a slog for a mile through knee-deep snow was de rigour in order to reach the chapel. On arrival I would feel cold and exhausted. It was then that I suspect I came as close, as I ever will, to heaven. My heaven stemmed from the dreamy state that I entered into, as my chills were overcome by the warmth in the beautiful chapel, the ethereal Latin hymns sung by the sisters, and the sweet feminine responses to the repetitive (religious) exhortations in Latin of the chaplain.

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With permission of the author. This is an on going story one paragraph at a time beginning on the post of July 6th.

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