C'est La Vie
What a beautiful piece of heartache this has all turned out to be. Lord knows we've learned the hard way all about healthy apathy. And I use these words pretty loosely. There's so much more to life than words..
Things I love
Monday, August 20, 2007
Especially being brown.
(The Crapaccino, that is.)
Anyway... it has been SO hot and SO humid here, that I heard a rumor the heat index was upwards of 200F... I don't know if I quite believe that, but I would easily believe above 150. Folks here from the hotter areas of the US (the Pheonix type areas, where heat is around 120 but humidity is lower) swelter and shrivel under the humidity... I think I actually got the better deal being from FL and more used to high humidity and heat combos than folks used to even higher heat but lower humidity. I'm more used to the feeling of swimming, of breathing in thick watery air.
Even so, it is STILL amazingly hot to me... And due to get hotter before the week is over.
Today, the air felt dirty.. inhaling felt like I might have been lying on the ground near a puddle or something more than breathing in air.
I'm getting used to it, though, and I'm glad it was a little cooler than normal when I got here because that was still incredibly hot to me, but I couldn't imagine getting off the plane yesterday or today... even more, I couldn't imagine being on a flight deck right now. Poor Real Sailors. I'm so glad I'm not one. ;)
I don't have internet at my hotel anymore, so I'll only be blogging every now and then, just like the old days....
That's it for now.
Wednesday, August 15, 2007
My first really funny experience with Arablish here was on tonight's menu. Pretty good English throughout, but I decided to pass on the third option:
Monday, August 13, 2007
I think at least part of it was realizing that I am actually getting paid LESS in some ways than I was in Jax, contrary to popular experience.... since I have no spouse or kids, they don't have to pay me all the extra stuff others get when they're here... so I only get the minimal extra pays, which actually end up being less than what I got there, which was surprising to say the least.
And there were some other realizations today that made a big difference. And not being able to go anywhere alone is really killing the people watcher in me, the part of me Slwhich likes to be alone in a crowd, sitting in a corner with a cup of tea or coffee and watching everyone else.
As weird as it is, the time change and the different working days and how few overlap with Jax is another part --- it sorta limits my connection back home, especially as far as professional connections. Heck, some time zones don't overlap working hours with mine at all...
As tired as I am, I think trying to sleep it off Saturday and yesterday after work only made it worse. So I'm going to go back to trying to fight off the jet lag and everything else by keeping normal hours and physical fitness and eating well and all that stuff that they say will help.. and I know it'll pass soon enough ... that's not a problem. I'm looking forward to making more friends at some point with whom I can go out and maybe be alone with them.
Meanwhile, my skin is HATING the conditions over here. *sigh* ... Maybe it'll adjust to these and then never bother me in better conditions again. Now, THERE's a silver lining.
Friday, August 10, 2007
This is the Guinness at the airport in Shannon, Ireland. I have been to Ireland. I drank a Guinness there. And got a candy bar that was dark chocolate outside and a Jameson's truffle inside. Mmmm..
And this is my first Guinness over here, with one of my temporary co-workers. There are several Irish pubs here, and I've been to two so far. Really nice times ... decent Guinness. I'll go back to Ireland when I can to have more there, though.
This is sunset in the clouds somewhere over Europe, when they were swirled around and all magical looking.
This .... This is me with Jamila. As soon as I got here, I got two of my coworkers to go with me on a sponsored trip of horseback riding and a "Texas-sized dinner" (consisting of a small piece of steak, two large lamb chops or something, a sausage, and some pork rinds with some good french fries and a steamed small tomato). I fell in love with Jamila right away because of her tongue sticking out and then we all had a really nice ride... I'll be riding as much as I can over here. Yay!
LuLu the camel had ... one hump ... Lulu the camel had ... one hump..........
Lulu also tried to eat my face.
Tuesday, August 07, 2007
Saturday, August 04, 2007
This is the tree frog that was waiting for me when I got here last night.
This is an Ugly Duck. Blogged about these nearly three years ago, so here's a picture. Doesn't even show you how ugly they really are, but it's a good start. The red on the face is bubbly and gross and a weird, pukey shade of red. The feathers are all mottled and dirty looking, none are vibrant. This one is probably a female, and the males are even uglier.
This is my father. He has, at times, looked like Stephen King. It's a slightly distorted picture because it's close range with a camera phone, but it gives you a good idea.
This is Eddie From Ohio playing at the Falcon Ridge Folk Fest during the Harmony workshop.
If you've never seen them, you need to. Seriously. You're missing out.
And this is the reconstruction effort at the World Trade Center site.
I was glad to have a chance to catch a shot with the flag blowing proudly. Forever may she wave.
Overall, such a great trip ... really stellar.
My older brother and his estranged wife are both having personal issues right now to the point that I wasn't able to see my niece while in town, and that broke my heart. But I was able to give her maternal grandmother some presents for her, and a card, so that hopefully she will get those and know that I didn't just forget about her or something rediculous like that. I hope those two grow up soon, because they seemed to really want to when they realized they were having a child, but she's six-and-a-half now, and I'm not sure those two have ever been more immature. *sigh* ... it just makes me so sad to see, especially because he was always My Older Brother, the person I looked up to so much, thought he knew everything and could do everything.... my twin brother and I learned a lot of things at the same time as eachother, of course, but it often came from our older brother. And now we're both more grown-up than he, and that's a really strange feeling.
Anyway. .. other than that one major disappointment, it was a wonderful trip --- lots of good time with my dad and Peter, with my mother and Mary. Got to see a couple of friends in South Florida (with whom I'm nearing the ten-year mark of being close to .... very few people in my life outside of the Bannerfolk have known me that long), and my time in Jax between NY and S FL and again now has been great ... visiting work after picking up my passport was really nice, and the rest of my time here has been good... with a few more hours left to see folks, I'm pretty excited.
And I feel ready to go. It will all hit me on the plane (that's how it always is for me), but at the moment I really feel ready.
Hippie: (after hearing Max wants to avoid the draft)You still have options man.
"So how do i do normal
"It's been known for a train to jump its track. It's ok, so you'll know, most times they come back. It's ok to lose your life, when you finally see your birth. It's ok to say, "I love you," and figure sometimes it's gonna hurt.
"As a comedian, you have to start the show strong and you have end the show strong. Those are the two key elements. You can't be like pancakes, all exciting at first, but then by the end you're sick of 'em!"
"Hey, this is weird! I ordered one frozen yogurt and they gave me two. You don't happen to like frozen yogurt, do you?" "I love it!" "You're kidding! What a crazy random happenstance!"
"Only one more trip," said a gallant seaman,
"It was Flannery O'Connor who said that 'grace must wound before it heals.' Her words help me to separate what is most true about life from the things we want to be true. We want life to be painless. True grace is a hard sell because in order for the human heart to understand forgiveness and love, it must first experience darkness and isolation. A life lived under the rule of grace is a life of need which allows us to receive an appreciate the gift of the giver of grace. This is why we will always have the poor with us; this is why God will not allow us to ignore injustice; this is why we are called to a life we cannot handle alone, which can and will break us in the effort to live it -- because grace must wound before it heals."
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
I thought Christmas Day would never come. But it's here at last, so Mom and Dad, the waiting's finally done. And you gotta get up, you gotta get up, you gotta get up, it's Christmas morning.
O little town of Bethlehem,
Walk humbly, son
Strings of lights above the bed
"In a little while I'll feel better
"Please tell me once again that You love me. That You love me. Please tell me once again that I matter to You and You really care. Please tell me once again that You're with me, forever. It's not that I could ever doubt you, I just love the way it sounds. I just love the way it sounds."
"Every once in a while, a bannerzen posts."
"7:30. What kind of people have to be at work at 7:30?"
have you seen my love
Traveling is significant because it takes so much effort. Either you're going to some place you love, or you're leaving some place you love. Usually it's both.
I think I have Bond's ability to get into trouble but not his ability to get out of it. Someday I'll be in some foreign country with 5 thugs with automatic rifles pointed at me, and I'll just.... fart
"You had no alternative .. We must work in the world. The world is thus." --- "No .. Thus have we made the world."
The summer ends and we wonder where we are And there you go, my friends, with your boxes in your car And you both look so young And last night was hard, you said You packed up every room And then you cried and went to bed But today you closed the door and said "We have to get a move on. It's just that time of year when we push ourselves ahead, We push ourselves ahead."
Looking out the bedroom at this snowy TV.. ever since commencement, no one's asking 'bout me. But I bet before the night falls, I could catch the late bus.. take small provisions and this Beethoven bust. I could find work in the outskirts of the city, eat some fish on the way.. befriend an old dog for a roadside pal, find a nice couch to stay -- a pull-out sofa, if you please!"
Ooh! Get me away from here I'm dying
"The trouble with folks like Brownie is they hold their life in like a bakebean fart at a Baptist cookout and only let it slip out sideways a little at a time when they think there's nobody noticing. Now that's the last thing on earth the Almighty intended. He intended all the life a man's got inside him, he should live it out just as free and strong and natural as a bird."
"Life is a phantasmagoria .. It is a pell-mell of confused and tumultuous scenes. We try in vain to find a purpose - to bring an order, a unity to life. I suppose that is the appeal of art. Art is the blending of the real and the unreal, the conquering of nature. It is real enough for it to reflect life, but has the unity that life lacks."
"in time memories fade.
I've always had this feeling about Patty that she's complex and intriguing...I like Patty alot. She's got a good heart and tells terrible squirrel jokes.
"Try to remember that world-weariness isn't necessarily a bad thing. In the book of Mark, I think its Mark, Jesus looks at a blind man and sighs. Jesus sighed before even telling the man he would be healed. He sighed, and I'm not sure that there's a much more human expression of frustration than this. Faced with the horrid picture of a cursed earth and looking into the white eyes of a man blind from the day he was born, He sighed. The Creator of the universe in human form was sad "of the evils of this world," the world He created. Your Creator sighed for you in the same way before He healed you and made you His."
After the last secret's told
After the last bullet tears through flesh and bone
After the last child starves
And the last girl walks the boulevard
After the last year that's just too hard
There is love
-- Andrew Peterson, After the Last Tear Falls
"when you most need people, you don't need perfection - just to know someone gives a damn"
"My brother's always [telling me], 'You should be more mysterious--boys like that.' But I'm not good at that. It would just make me more uncomfortable."
"Loners want to kill you, but not for any particular reason, and they'd probably like you if they weren't being guided by the violent voices in their head."
"No one wants to oil a snake these days!"
Her mom: "We're all safe."
-- Jamie Bevill and her mother during Christmas-Decorating dinner, December 20, 2002
i'd throw out all my shoes
i'd set up cans for friends
to dump their shoes senseless shoes
a pioneer of callouses
lordy-be and bless my soul
i'd be a barefoot spaceman
the first you'd ever know"
"The best way to have God's will for your life is to have no will of your own!"
"Generations circle and each one atones. The sins of the father are seperate from my own. In Pilgrim's Progress, it's forgiveness that makes whole, and as time levels and consoles, I place the daisies in your bowl."
"For a moment he just stared at her. Then, with an urf-urf-urf of laughter, he turned back to the controls."
"It's on the internet.. so, then, it must be true."
"Be at least as interested in what people can become as you are in what they have been."
Blessed be the rock stars!"
Get up for the shower.. wash and scrub and scour every part as if a cleaner man could better bear the shame..
"She was eating gnarly amounts of calcium."
Homeless man to girl trying to give him money: "No, thanks, ma'am. I never work on Sundays."
"Wow! I never thought I'd need a radar-guided spatula!"
"Isn't it great that I articulate? Isn't it grand that you can understand? ... I can talk, I can talk, I can talk!"
I believe that people laugh at coincidence as a way of relegating it to the realm of the absurd and of therefore not having to take seriously the possibility that there is a lot more going on in our lives than we either know or care to know... I suspect that part of it, anyway, is that every once and so often we hear a whisper from the wings that goes something like this: "You've turned up in the right place at the right time. You're doing fine. Don't ever think that you've been forgotten.
When I lay these questions before God I get no answer. But a rather special sort of "No answer." It is not the locked door. It is more like a silent, certainly not uncompassionate, gaze. As though He shook His head not in refusal but waiving the question. Like, "Peace, child; you don't understand."
CCM: You've spoken a lot more about crying than I ever thought you would.
"Youth is not a period of time. It is a state of mind, a result of the will, a quality of the imagination, a victory of courage over timidity, of the taste for adventure over the love of comfort. A man doesn't grow old because he has lived a certain number of years. A man grows old when he deserts his ideal. The years may wrinkle his skin, but deserting his ideal wrinkles his soul. Preoccuptaions, fears, doubts, and despair are the enemies which slowly bow us toward earth and turn us into dust before death. You will remain young as long as you are open to what is beautiful, good, and great; receptive to the messages of other men and women, of nature and of God. If one day you should become bitter, pessimistic, and gnawed by despair, may God have mercy on your old man's soul."
""Don't go matchmaking for me, Ilse," said Emily wit a faint smile... "I feel in my bones that I shall achieve old-maidenhood, which is an entirely different thing from having old-maidenhood thrust upon you."
"I wish Aunt Elizabeth would let me go to Shrewsbury, but I fear she never will. She feels she can't trust me out of her sight because my mother eloped. But she need not be afraid I will ever elope. I have made up my mind that I will never marry. I shall be wedded to my art"
"Tomorrow seems like a long ways away. But it will come, just like any other day... Deep inside, where the wounded creatures hide, I am afraid. Maybe I got lost somewhere along the way somehow. Please rescue me... Yea, though I walk through the valley of the dark shadow of death, I will fear no evil. For you are with me... Though I fear, though I am afraid, You are with me. Though I'm angry, tired, broken down and confused, You are with me. Though I sin like I've never sinned before, lose myself right out an open door, You are with me."
"The invisible people agreed about everything. Indeed most of their remarks were the sort it would not be easy to disagree with: "What I always say is, when a chap's hungry, he likes some victuals," or "Getting dark now; always does at night," or even "Ah, you've come over the water. Powerful wet stuff, ain't it?"" -- C. S. Lewis, The Voyage of the Dawn Treader
"When People object... that if Jesus was God as well as Man, then He had an unfair advantage which deprives Him for them of all value, it seems to me as if a man struggling in the water should refuse a rope thrown to him by another who had one foot on the bank, saying, "Oh but you had an unfair advantage." It is because of His advantage that He can help."
"But, you know, as a Christian, one of the big questions you always ask yourself is, "So we believe in Jesus, we believe in the teachings of the church, but what does that look like when it's lived out?" Because surely, one of the things that Jesus said that I think we often overlook is, "The person who hears my words and does them is like the wise man who built his house on the rock." He didn't say "the person who hears my words and thinks about 'em" or "whoever hears my words and agrees with it." But he said, "Whoever hears it and does it."
"find that which gives you breath and grants you more to give
"I have packed all my belongings. I don't belong here anymore. This pair of sandles, one pack to carry, this old guitar and this tattered old Bible. And I know I won't be afraid. 'cause I know, I know Home is where You are."
"Open up your weepy eyes, everyone is dancing. Angels peer through sweet disguise, through a fire of cleansing.
"You may be bruised and torn and broken, but
"I don't deserve to speak, and they don't deserve
to hear it. It's makin' me believe that it's not
"Kickin' against these goads sure did cut up my
feet. Didn't your hands get bloody as you washed
"They say God blessed us with plenty. I say
you?re blessed with poverty. ?Cause you never
stop to wonder whether earth is just a little
better than the Land of the Free"
"Computers will know everything in the 21st
century. They'll be like me in the 20th