In Lake Wobegon lives a good Lutheran lady who is quite prepared to die and wishes to be cremated and her ashes placed inside a bowling ball and dropped into the lake, no prayers, no hymns, thank you very much. Meanwhile, the Detmer girl returns from California where she has made a killing in veterinary aromatherapy to marry her boyfriend Brent aboard Wally's pontoon boat, presided over by her minister Misty Naylor of the Sisterhood of the Sacred Spirit. Brent arrives on Thursday. On Saturday, a delegation of renegade Lutheran pastors from Denmark come to town on their tour of America, their punishment for having denied the divinity of Jesus. And Barbara Peterson, whose mother Evelyn left the startling note about cremation and the bowling ball, is in love with a lovely fat man who slips around town in dim light and reconnoiters with her at the Romeo Motel. And then there is Raoul of the cigars and tinted shades and rainbow sportcoat and his long phone message ("Hey, Precious") after the angel of death has already come and gone. All is in readiness for the wedding-the giant shrimp shish kebabs, the French champagne, the wheels of imported cheese, the pate with whole peppercorns, the hot-air balloon, the flying Elvis, the pontoon boat, and the giant duck decoys-and then something else happens. It is Lake Wobegon as you've imagined it - good loving people who drive each other slightly crazy.
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