ColoRADo

So, I love Colorado. Turns out I know, like, a million people here. It’s beautiful, there is good food, good coffee (Stella’s, The Cup, The Unseen Bean), nice people, it’s easy to get around…
I spent a week in Estes Park with a bunch of 60 year old women, it was surprisingly fun. I loved hearing everyones stories. I can’t see my story cause I am still at the beginning. I have chapters and anecdotes, but when one is 60+ they can look back and see the story. See where God intervened, where the plot twists… it’s exciting. 
We went up to the mountains to spend a week studying the book of Esther (in the Bible). It was awesome. God is never actually mentioned in the book, but He is all over it. It’s really an amazing story, and encouraging that even when you can’t see God, He is there. He is working.
I am really excited to get to Seattle to see Cynthia… and really looking forward to the drive there through Wyoming and Montana… but I am not looking forward to leaving Colorado. I am staying with this awesome family much like the Haan/Johnson Bunch. It’s cool to know them cause it gives me an idea of what it is like to be friends with our family… Plus they’re rad.
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Tragedy or Comedy?

Remember in Something Like Fiction with Will Ferrill was trying to figure out if his life was a tragedy or a comedy? My life hands down, no questions asked is a comedy.

I camped at East Harbor State Park on Lake Erie in Ohio last night. Yesterday morning I googled a campground that was cheap and nice and the right distance away from where I was. Thats the one that came up- it looked nice, had good reviews and, since it’s a state park, I figured it would be cheap.

I got there and it was $21 for a primitive site. Strike 1. I didn’t leave myself another option and I was really banking on a relaxing morning so I went with it. At least they have showers and a beach.

I got settled in my spot (near an old couple in an RV, but not too close) and went looking for the beach. I never found it. Strike 2.

Oh well, I thought. I’ll just go back to my site and make some tea and read… I spilled 90% of my tea into the fire then it started to rain. Dang. Well, I’ll just go get ready for bed and curl up in my tent and watch TV on my iPod.

So I get my stuff out and start heading for the bathroom. It’s locked. No big deal, there is another one on the other side of the campground. There are 3 people cussin’ about the closed bathroom so I told them there is another one.

The Cussin’ Three had been birding all weekend and needed a shower. It was a dad, his daughter and her boyfriend from Bulgaria. They are from Southern Ohio. He used to live in Prescott. He saw 78 species of birds in one 8 hour stretch this weekend… and on… and on… and on. I got invited to go see the lighthouse (which I couldn’t find in the morning), to go birding, and to breakfast. I felt like I was being punked, all I wanted was to wash my face and crawl in my warm sleeping bag.

I finally shook The Cussin’ Three and went back to my tent. I watched some TV and went to sleep.

I woke up to… the garbage truck? No. What is that? I peeked out my tent at 7am to see construction workers, a dumptruck, an asphalt layer and all kinds of machines that do noisy things. Is this real? I tried to sleep through it, but when they got to the site next to mine I gave up and packed up. Strike 3, you’re OUT.

I got packed up and hit the showers- at least there were free hot showers! Well. They said they were hot. I waited and waited and waited. No hot water. I took a cold (ok tepid) shower this morning. Strike… 4?

An SNL Sketch of my Life

So I am driving down Cape Charles to meet the Halvorsen clan in Virginia Beach. Most of this trip I have been listening to audiobooks and Bible studies. I finished listening to Genesis and decided to listen to some tunes the rest of the way to Va Beach. I hit ‘Shuffle Songs’ as I usually do since I didn’t really know what I wanted to listen to. 
I don’t remember what song came on first, but it was something I had put on a mix for Jimi- skip. The next song was also something that reminded me of him- skip. Then there was a love song- skip. Then a breakup song- skip. Then another Jimi song- skip. Seriously? This went on for a good 10 minutes until Shawn Colvin’s The Facts About Jimmy came on. OMG, Really? Is this really happening right now?
Fortunately, it was hilarious. I felt like my iPod was playing a joke on me. Like I was on candid camera or something!
I turned it off and drove the last 20 or so minutes with the windows down and enjoyed the scenery music free.

Perspective (Title Page)

Note: If you have never read the Chronicles of Narnia you should. Also, I am ruining the ending of the last book. It won’t make the stories any less amazing, but just know… this is a spoiler.

A week or so ago I finished the last book of the Chronicles of Narnia- The Last Battle. In it all the Sons of Adam and Daughters of Eve that ever went into Narnia (minus Susan) were reunited in the New Narnia after the end of the world.

They saw Narnia come to an end. They lost the last battle and Aslan came in and commanded father time to end and put out the sun. Then the waters rode to meet the heavens and froze cause it was so cold. It was all very depressing for the people around, but then something remarkable happened.

They thought they were in a shed of sorts, but it turns out they were in New Narnia. Everything looked familiar, but somehow different. More Narnian than before. Bigger, better, more beautiful. They were encouraged to go “further up and further in” and they further they went the bigger and the more Narnian it got. It was better and better. Then they discovered that all the people they ever knew, even from ages past, were there.

There was no hunger, no sadness. It was the New Jerusalem the Bible talks about in Revelation.

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” Revelation 21:1-4

Back in England they were all in a train accident and killed.

And suddenly everything came into perspective. This life is so short. In the book C.S. Lewis says they realized when they got to the new Narnia that the whole lives they led before that were not the whole story. Not even the first chapter. In fact, their whole lives were really just like a title page for the story that was yet to come.

This life passes away so quickly. Listen to any old person for more than 5 minutes and they will surely say something about how quickly time flies.

No matter what happens in this life, my future is secure. There is nothing I can do to screw it up, and no matter what heartbreak or sorrow I endure, in the end the One who made it all will wipe my tears and they will be no more.

Hallelujah

Excerpt from The Last Battle by C. S. Lewis, Copyright 1956, chapter 16,”Farewell to Shadowlands”: And as He spoke He no longer looked to them like a lion; but the things that began to happen after that were so great and beautiful that I cannot write them. And for us this is the end of all the stories, and we can most truly say that they all lived happily ever after. But for them it was only the beginning of the real story. All their life in this world and all their adventures in Narnia had only been the cover and the title page: now at last they were beginning Chapter One of the Great Story which no one on earth has read: which goes on forever: in which every chapter is better than the one before.”

New England, Old Home

I loved New England. From Boston I went to Salem, Cape Ann, the New Hampshire coast and up into Maine. 
Salem was kind of a let down because it was really touristy. They have really built an industry on their sordid past. I only stayed there about half an hour. Then I headed up to Cape Ann. 
Cape Ann is amazing. My Mom spent a lot of time there in high school and college and was able to tell me cool places to go. I stopped at the candy shop (cause, yum!) and saw the ice cream shop she used to go to. I drive along the coast to Rockport, home of the most photographed and painted building in North America. (Motif #1, and my yummy $5 dinner of calm chowder and a stuffed clam at left)
Rockport is the coolest place ever. I loved it! There wasn’t much there, but it made me want to live on a fishing boat or something! There were buoys galore and good food and simple buildings… It felt like home. I can totally tell that that part of the country is in my blood. The further north I went the more I felt it. (And anchors everywhere!! Love it!)
I want to live somewhere rugged and cold like Maine or Nova Scotia. I’m pale enough! I love the idea of wearing boots and a big warm jacket and crunching through the snow down to the market to get milk and knowing everyone in the town. I want to live in a lighthouse and have to stay up all night during the storm making sure it stays lit. I want to eat lots of fish and lobster and clams and butter! Yum! 

Seeing my first lighthouse in York, Maine! I’m in love!!

Boston, Mass

I got to Boston a day sooner than I expected. I was listening to an audiobook (Till We Have Faces by C.S. Lewis) and didn’t realize I was so close to Boston until I was there. I had planned to camp outside the city then go in and explore in the morning, but I guess that wasn’t meant to be. 
I decided I would drive around and find a safe looking place to sleep in my car since I told the girl that Andrew Wolfe found for me to crash with at Harvard that I wouldn’t be there until the following night. 
As it turns out, Boston looks really scary at night and I couldn’t find any big commercial looking hotels with free parking. I ended up calling Alice, the Harvard student that kindly offered up the futon inn her dorm to Stella and me. 
It was great! It turns out she is from San Jose and we had a really nice conversation that night. It was really cool staying at Harvard, too. I have never been there before but have heard so much about it! (My half sister went there and so did Elle Woods!)
The next day, armed with a really good map I drove from Cambridge into Boston. I drove because there was no good parking on campus and it just seemed like a good idea. It was not. 
You see, I never get lost. Never. I have an uncanny sense of direction. Except in Boston. It was horrible. None of the streets make sense and I swear they move from spot to spot totally disregarding the map. On top of that Boston drivers are at least 10 times worse than LA drivers. Believe it. 
I freaked out. I called Mom bawling cause I couldn’t find parking for less than $1 million per hour and I couldn’t get where I wanted to be. Se encouraged me to just park at Boston Commons, pay the $10 million to park for the day and forget about it and enjoy the city!
So I did and I did. I walked the freedom trail from the Commons to the Old North Church. I had lunch (of amazing wonderful yummy clam chowder and lobster) at Durgin Park and I sat on the steps on the side of Park Street Church where Grandma and Granddaddy got married. It was fun to walk in my families history. 
Though I loved Boston and really, really want to go back with Mom and Aunt Janet I don’t think I can see myself living there. I kind of wish I had gone to college there, but what’s done is done. 
I do love Massachusetts though I could totally live on Cape Ann. And I especially love calling it ‘Mass’… but more on that later.

All I need is You

Left my fear by the side of the road
Hear You speak
Won’t let go
Fall to my knees as I lift my hands to pray

Got every reason to be here again
Father’s love that draws me in
And all my eyes wanna see is a glimpse of You

All I need is You
All I need is You Lord
Is you Lord

One more day and it’s not the same
Your spirit calls my heart to sing
Drawn to the voice of my Saviour once again
Where would my soul be without Your Son
Gave His life to save the earth
Rest in the thought that You’re watching over me

All I need is You
All I need is You Lord
Is You Lord

You hold the universe
You hold everyone on earth
You hold the universe
You hold
You hold

All I need is You
All I need is You Lord
Is You Lord 

© 2005 Cbs/Epic/Wtg Records