Monday, May 28, 2007

On Goodbyes and Airport Amusments

I have spent this last week feeling very happy and very sad at the same time... tis a strange feeling. Very heavy is the only word I can use to describe it... I can't wait to see folk again but everytime I say a goodbye, I'm aware of the heaviness which accompanies the parting. I do like the french. No falseness and saying things you don't mean in goodbyes... so many phrases that can be used "bonne continuation, bonne retour, bon courage" are a few of my favourites. No commitment attached :) But whether there is any commitment there or not, I still feel the heaviness! :(

Oh and I have something to keep me occupied on the plane on Wednesday afternoon...
Tongue twisters...

en français

Les chaussettes de l'Archiduchesse sont-elles sèches, archi-sèches? - Are the socks of the Archduchess dry, really dry?
Un chasseur sachant chasser sait chasser sans son chien de chasse. - A hunter who knows how to hunt knows how to hunt without his hunting dog.


De knappe kapper kapt heel knap - (something to do with a barber cutting pretty hair but his employee cutting it better)
maar de knecht van de knappe kapper kapt nog
knapper ken de knappe kapper kappen ken


Fischer's fritz fischt frusche fische (something to do with a fisherman called Fritz who fishes fresh fish)
frusche fische fischt fischer's fritz


sex laxar i en laxask - (6 salmon in a box)

If you see me muttering to myself on the plane, it is all for a good cause!

Monday, May 21, 2007

a glass of water

I'd been feeling kinda empty, then started looking through this famous psalm and really thinking through each line... this is basically want went through my head as I was reading it.

"Praise the Lord O my soul, all my inmost being, praise his holy name." - yeah that would be good... get a move on soul!

"forget not all his benefits, who forgives your sins" - That's right... I have been forgiven! What does that song say "ransomed, healed, restored, forgiven" and it's by grace not by works... I've done nothing to deserve forgiveness, I believe and He does all the work, and it's more than just forgiveness, I have a fresh start every time, I'm being made new each day, like Him over time and He sacrificed so much to make this possible! Woow!

"who heals all your diseases" I've never been seriously physically ill but I've definitely been healed of some past emotional hurts in recent years.

"who redeems your life from the pit" hmmm... I don't think my life has never been "the pit" but I have definitely come close to rock bottom at times this year and He rescued me. Like when I was feeling lonely and frustrated through feeling kinda purposeless and lacking "meaningful" friendships in France, He brought the meaningful conversations and friendships when I needed them the most, He spoke when I needed to hear Him :)

"who crowns you with love and compassion" - yeeeaah... I'm starting to see the evidence of that now :)

"who satisfies your desires with good things" - when I felt purposeless and desired purpose, He gave me opportunities, He gave me people to love and He made me useful!

"so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's" - just thinking about all this stuff, remembering His goodness to me and that I am loved by a God who crowns me with such love and compassion is so refreshing and redonnes mine energy and refills me with spirit... ran out of words around here... and that was just the first four verses!

Try it

Thursday, May 17, 2007


Spent 5 nackering days with 2 lovely french girls...

Day 1 - a nice medium long trek and then one night ocamp in the alpilles (after the alps they really do seem tiny)

Day 2 - A rather much longer trek from town to town near to Miramas where we stayed the other 3 nights (done on v little sleep and in very dry 30degree heat= not so helpful) NB The nearest town is almost always further away than you imagine.

Follow that, the next day, with a loooong (by my standards anyway) bike ride, all 3 or us on matching red bikes complete with neon green helmet (isn't it beautiful!), handy handlebar bags which we crammed full with all sorts of goodies such as biscuits (yes Quinn I hear you :P) and strawberries mmmmm and yellow plastic-tasting water bottles which we got to keep...

Then riding and wading waist high in the sea in the Camaragues (Day 4)

Finished off by a tourist stop accompanied by self-downloaded audioguide (a million times better than those museum ones) in Arles

Recommended activity for any trip - get those card games out, anywhere, when or how :)

Add on the no space to breathe and think english, ever... and this made Dish a very very tired girl indeed... Thank goodness for bandes dessinées... I think I might have exploded otherwise. :)

A highly recommended experience... looovely memories made :)

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Things I've enjoyed the most here...

French cuisine - Tis no myth, French food really does beat British food by a long way!

Le feu - a church-funded, fulltimeworker-supported, building-equipped christian organisation for student ages and up which I stumbled across just a couple of months back, just when I really needed it, despite living just a short walk away. After spending 8 months in a foreign country, being able to hang out with, eat, pray and study the bible in french and my native language with folk in a similar situation as me is such a gift, even if it has only been for the last couple of months.

Savouring french eccentricities like little kids carrying baguettes as long as themselves, bereted old men playing ptonk, music rehearsals where more time is spent in discussion than in playing, listen to very interesting political rants from some v intelligent french people about how Sarkozy is the new Blair/Hitler/just generally a fascist and seeing giant fish heads in the supermarket

The international banter here, especially with the other assistants... cooking for each other, slagging off each other's accents, the odd bit o dancing...

Baebar, this lovely chap beside me ------------->
Have had a bit of a lovehate relationship with him over the past year, but I have made some great friends because of him and he's helped me integrate into french society... it will be sad to say goodbye.