Methinks I owe my public an update on what I've been up to lately. I've been out and about!
I went to Stephenville a week ago for the wedding of a dear friend, Gina, and it was great but a little strange. The trip was strange, not the wedding. :) The wedding was beautiful, simply stunning. I think I say this after most weddings, but Gina was the most beautiful bride ever. The service was simple but elegant, and I was so blessed to be able to share that sacrament with them.
Old friends-- Becky, Carrie, Mara, Gina (the bride), Nina, Ann
Going "home" after 5 years is peculiar... you've never seen such surprised faces as the people at church, whose expressions went from the "polite stranger" face, to the "I know you but where from" face, to the "OH MY GOODNESS!" face. :) It was great. I got to play whirlwind catch up with lots of people, and it was really interesting to try to sum up the past 5 years in 30 seconds. Hahaha, let's think-- I finished college, went to Brazil 3 times, been seriously ill twice, lived in Japan and don't really have a set future. That's about it!
I guess my whole experience was validated when one old friend saw me, ran up and gave me a big hug and said, "Welcome home!" Home. Yes. It is.
After a few days in T-town I suddenly and quite unexpectedly made a trip to Searcy, Arkansas, most often known for being home to the mighty fighting Bison-- Harding University. I got the chance to visit with several people I hadn't seen since my last campaign to Brazil in 2004 (we worked with a Harding campaign). I had lovely time on the campus, which is always simply stunning at this time of the year with the blooming flowers, and got to remanisce over lots of good times. I had wonderful hostesses (muita obrigada Cynthia, Angela, and Kelly!). And I got to see my dear A-Lo (aka Amanda).
Amanda, Cynthia and I lived together for a week of our campaign in the city of Itu. Our homestay was actually a woman who was out of the country and left us her condo. I have a thousand funny stories about that week, which had they been shared with anyone else would have made it miserable, but with those two we can still laugh hysterically about the night we got stuck in the elevator or when the key broke in the door at 10pm or our complete and utter lack of food in the house.
Cynthia, Ann and Amanda attempting to scrounge up dinner
Ann and Cynthia
Annie Pooh and A-Lo (Ann and Amanda, and there are only 2 people in the world allowed to call me Annie Pooh ;) )
I love catching up with old friends.
Back to OKC next week!
*Gold star to the person who can identify the title reference! ;)