Meat Pies, Mushy Peas, and a Beetle Drive

Meat Pies and Mushy Peas, it is what's for dinner.

Meat Pies and Mushy Peas, it is what’s for dinner.

Last night we were blessed by an opportunity to be with the wonderful people of Carrville Methodist Church.  At Harvest Time each year, they celebrate as a church community by sharing a meal and playing games.  We played quiz games like “Can you identify the person in this picture?”  I didn’t do so well on the British Politicians and Athletes.  Later they asked trivia questions on various topics.  We did pretty well on the history and music portions.  We failed miserably at trying to identify English sweets from written clues.  I think I will have to eat more English sweets to round out my education.

Afterwards came the Beetle Drive.  This was new to us.  What is a Beetle Drive?  If you ever played the Milton Bradley game “Cootie,” you’ll be familiar with it.  But how do you play with the 80 people we had last night?  John W. Simpson describes it well in his book, Yearning for the Land: A Search for Homeland in Scotland and America.

Beetle Drive

The Beetle Drive Score Sheet.

“‘Beetle Drive’ is…Simple.  Silly.  Even Corny.  Fun, nonetheless…The first player each round to draw a complete beetle wins the round, with the overall winner determined by total score after twelve rounds.  Eleven parts compose the bug: body, head, two eyes, two antennae, four legs, and a tail…Each body part corresponds to a number di[e].  To draw a part, you must roll the corresponding number, however, you must first roll the head and body to draw the parts attached to each.  Four players sit at a table and share done di[e], which is passed from player to player after each roll.  Be careful that you don’t toss the di[e] off the table in the excitement.   “Beetle Drive!” shouts the Winner.  Players then add up their score, one point for each body part.  Prizes are given at the end of the highest and lowest scores…”

Our new friend Mr. Ray (read about him in an earlier post) came out to be part of our family.  Afterwards we walked to his cozy house for coffee and treats for the kids.  He was proud to show us his VHS copy of his self-edited home movies of his vacation to Kentucky ten years ago.  He was fun to see him so proud to show off his experiences to us.

We have found the people of the Northeast to be very friendly and outgoing.  They scoff at the idea that all the English are reserved, introverted, and stuffy.  They tell me that is more typical of the people of the south of England.  We are blessed to be a part of such a wonderful community and a part of a great group of people like those at Carrville Methodist Church.

Quote from: Simpson, John W. Yearning for the Land: A Search for Homeland in Scotland and America.  Random House Publishers, 2009.


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