I Lift My Eyes Up

I’ve had a couple reminders to put pictures up, and I shall, as soon as I have pictures to put up. I haven’t had anything to take pictures of yet, unless you want images of stacks of worship songs I’ve weeded my way through, or a picture of the desk I’m working at covered with more stacks of worship songs all around my laptop and somewhere, hidden amidst the clutter, is a cup of tea.

Let me tell you about tea for a moment. I think it is fabulous. And British hold to their stereotype of tea drinking. Everywhere I go I’m asked, “Do you want a cup of tea?” And they make me up a cup of tea and while it’s brewing they ask: “Do you take milk? Sugar? One scoops or two?” When I return to the states, I believe I will be a converted tea drinking. No more coffee for me. Tea doesn’t make me crash, and it’s warm and delicious.

On the subject of delicious, the food here is spectacular. I have a absolutely marvelous host, and everyday, before I go to the church, she makes me lunch to take with me. I felt a little guilty when I was first coming to the UK because I was a vegetarian. Now, I don’t feel guilty about being a vegetarian, I love it quite a bit actually; but I was feeling guilty because I don’t like being difficult or being a problem for anyone. My goal in life, subconsciously or consciously, is to not be a burden and to make other peoples lives easier. However, I had no desire to eat meat, not to mention how sick it would make me, so I told the Pastor of the church that I’m serving at that I was a vegetarian. Once I got here, I found out that my host had been a vegetarian before, but started eating meat because it comes from her farm and they treat the animals well, and it’s all organic. All of that to say, she has been feeding me the most delicious vegetarian food. Today I had a wrap, as they call it. It was a burrito type wrapper with lettuce, tomato, cheese, red onions, and something else that I can’t recall. It was so simple, but marvelously delicious. Needless to say, I’m being well taken care of in my vegetarian ways.

However, I’m struggling elsewhere. My heart is very heavy, and for some reason, I just don’t want to be here.  I think I’m just having a hard time with all the people I’m constantly around, not to mention that my body is being quite stubborn and not adjusting to the time, so I’m always laying in bed awake or feeling tired throughout the day. So if you would just say a quick prayer that I will sleep tonight (because it is nighttime here) and that God would refresh my spirit, I would be most grateful.

I shall soon have pictures for you all! I have off from the church tomorrow, so the family I’m with is taking me exploring. I believe a castle and the Chester Zoo is on our list. The youngest daughter, who is about eight, told her mother that: “We must take Alexa to a castle, because Americans love castles!” Apparently she was practicing her American accent and lassoing a rocking horse before I got here as well.

I almost forgot!

I really wanted to share this song with all of my blog readers. My job at the church during the week is to go through all the old songs that where in pills around the office and organize them, as well as find new songs for the worship service. I came across the most terrible song ever. It is in the pile for the shredder, never to be sung again, but I had to share the lyrics because they were dreadful. Dreadful. Dreadful. I really can’t express it enough how dreadful these lyrics are, but I’ll let you see for yourself. The name of the song is: I am the Apple of God’s Eye and I’m typing it out exactly as it appeared on the lead sheet.

 I am the APPLE of God’s eye

His BANANA over me is love

For wherever this MAN-GOES

He ORANGES His angles to look after me

As His blessings PLUMet from above

And the Chorus goes:

The Great Fruit of God

The Great Fruit of God

The Great Fruit of God it over flows.

And that was it. Terrible. Dreadful. I suppose it could have been a VBS song from the 1800’s, but even then, what a terrible song. Fruit puns. In a worship song. It’s painful to me.

On that note, my current favorite worship song is Always by Kristian Stanfill, the lyrics have been very encouraging and I’ve been writing this listening to it on repeat, only through my left headphone though. I very rarely put both headphones in; odd fact about me.

Jetlag, cows, tea, and laptop computers

Greetings from England!

I am currently using a windows desktop computer, which is more painful then I think you can imagine, but I suppose I can’t be too picky. I am waiting to get an adaptor for my laptop, because while I was going to purchase said adaptor while I was still in the States, I was told by my contact in the UK that I wouldn’t need one, so I didn’t purchase one. Turns out, I do need one. So once I have that solved, I shall put my window using ways behind me for good; hopefully.

To start things off about my England trip, I shall tell you about the worst experience flying I have ever had. I flew out of Buffalo to Washington D.C. on a small aircraft, but it was only an hour flight, so that really wasn’t too bad.Once arriving at the Washington airport, I wandered around and found my gate, settling in to wait out my six hour layover. As the time neared nine, half an hour before I was to board the aircraft to England, a red word appears next to the flight number on the screen. Cancelled.

I may have panicked a little. Cancelled? It was a mistake, I was sure.

Unfortunately, it was not a mistake, and at 11 pm, I headed out of the airport with a hotel voucher for the night and made my way to catch the shuttle. Once I got to the required shuttle pickup, with all the other people from the same flight, and fifteen minuets later, the shuttle bus appeared. People pushed and clamoured on, and because I am the way I am, I was standing on the curb as the bus was literally packed full. People were standing back to back stomach to stomach in the aisles. But I wasn’t worried, for a second shuttle bus had appeared a couple minuets later. It was quickly packed equally as full as the first bus. And I was still on the curb.

“I’ll be back in fifteen minuets,” the shuttle driver promised the rest of us.

So fifteen minuets we waited. My feet had began to ache and I was just tired all around. Five minuets past the promised fifteen, there was still no sign of the shuttle. Ten more minuets, still no sign. Fifteen. No sign. Twenty. No sign. And a full forty-five minuets later, the shuttle finally appeared. I was one of the first people on, just because of where I was standing. The bus became as packed as the first two, with still more people on the curb. I felt the slightest bit guilty for not giving up my seat, but I couldn’t due to the fact that I was in the very back of the bus, and I really didn’t want to.

Little note about me: I don’t like hotel rooms. I never really have honestly. But a couple years ago, I watched a thriller with one of my friends about an author who stayed in a haunted hotel room. It may have frightened me more then I had let on at the time.

So I get to my hotel room and put my key in the door. It won’t open. I flipped the key around and put it into the lock the correct way. The light flashes green and in I enter. Now imagine for a moment if you will, a twenty-one year old girl who is afraid of hotel rooms, with a guitar strapped on her back and a messenger bag hanging from her arm holding the door open with one foot as she leans into the dark hotel room feeling the walls for the light switch. I’m sure it was amusing. I finally found the light switches, inconveniently located on the other side of the bathroom, and flicked them on. And that’s how I slept, with all the lights on, repeating to myself, “Greater is He who is in me, then he who is in the world.”(1 John 4:4b)

I got up at four to catch the shuttle at five, for my eight o’clock flight. Needless to say, eight o’clock flight turned into a 1 pm flight, which put me in England at 2am. It was incredibly exciting. My luggage had been destroyed somewhere along the way. The main part was still intact and all my clothes where there, but there is a giant hole in one of the pockets and one of the sides is crushed. Needless to say, I was not impressed with the airline.

For the good stuff, being in England has been great. I am staying with a family from the church and they own a large, organic dairy farm. The family is great, and being on a farm is great. There are cows, sheep, goats, cats, kittens, and horses, all in the backyard. For breakfast sunday morning, I had fresh brewed British tea with fresh milk that came from one of their cows that morning. It was splendid.

One final story for now.

I have been here for a couple days now, and have had immense trouble flushing their toilets. For some reason, I couldn’t get it to flush. So I would stand in the bathroom, pushing down on the handle over and over and pumping it and finally it would flush. But I figured, ,you really shouldn’t have to pump the handle to get it to flush. It didn’t make sense to me. Finally I asked if there was a trick I was missing, because it looked just like a toilet back in the states, but I couldn’t get it to work properly. Turns out, I wasn’t pushing the handle down all the way. I’m sure I’m the only guest they’ve ever had that has asked how to use the toilet. But one push on the handle all the way down, and wah-la! it flushes.

Alright, that is all for now.