Archive for August 15th, 2010

h1

Thoughts on change

August 15, 2010

I have always been someone who loves change, or at least the thought of it.  Moving to England, moving to Seattle, starting new jobs, instantly fitting into new social circles, decorating new apartments, exploring new cities, all of those tend to sound good to me.  Change is thrilling. Change is leaving everything I don’t like about my current life and finding something new.  Change is easy and full of adventure.  Change means getting rid of responsibilities that continually try to persuade me I am actually an adult now.  But the thing that I always tend to forget is that change also means leaving things.  Change means leaving people, housemates, friends, communities, churches, familiar neighborhood walks, routine, favorite coffee shops, and the some times familiarity of random people on the streets.

Feeling apart of the community here in Rebaland (many people’s affectionate nickname for the neighborhood around my church) was not something that happened quickly or was easy for me.  As I approach the end of graduate school and the beginning of a huge widening of options (stay at my current job, get a new job in the area, move to Seattle, go overseas for a year, move down into the city, stay at my current house, etc), it is always to easy for me to overlook the difficulties of change.  It took me over 2 years to begin to feel apart of my community, to get to the point where people I randomly pass on the street are often people I know, to feel comfortable using my leadership skills to plan goofy charade games for church meetings.

In the end change, and all its endless possibilities, will always thrill me, but as I am learning change, once it actually occurs, can also be overwhelming, difficult and painful.  This doesn’t mean I don’t want to seek out change, but I think I need to also remember to appreciate more the richness of being here, in one place, with one community and learning to adapt myself to it.

h1

Belated Vacation Recap: The train

August 15, 2010

So I can’t believe it was almost a month ago already that Becca and I headed out on the Empire Builder to go visit friends in Seattle.  I have been to Seattle several times before, in fact it has been a yearly tradition since some of my very dear friends from college decided to move out there in 2006 (thus making this my 4th Seattle trip if you do the math).  Anyways this time, given our more open schedule, Becca and I decided to take the train.  A very different concept than the 3 1/2 hour plane ride, this left Chicago on a Wednesday afternoon around 2pm and took until 10am on Friday to get us to Seattle.  But man, oh man was it worth it.  I will let my pictures do most of the talking here, but I will say 46 hours of TV on DVD watching, reading, SIMS playing, and just staring out the window can actually be pretty good.

We didn't have to wait until we got to Montana to see some gorgeous sceneary, even plan ole Wisconsin can look pretty spectacular.

The lounge car was one of the best parts of the train; seats that faced the window, curved windows above that went down almost to the floor and even occasionally park rangers to tell you all about a particular location.

These South Dakotan hills were our first indication that we were entering The West

How we kept ourselves entertained: Books, episodes of Bones, cards, etc

I absolutely loved this scenery.

We even saw some horses from the train, no moose though.

Thursday evening brought us beautiful sunset sky as we approached the mountains of Glacier National Park

We also ended up seeing two sets of double rainbows that evening.

This leg of the trip was by far my favorite.

Glacier National Park

We saved the pesto for our last meal on the train, super yummy pita, cheese sticks, cherry tomatoes and pesto sauce!

The next morning we were still going through mountains.

Washington is a beautiful state.