It was hard to tell whether we were rising to meet the sun, or the sun was rising to meet us.
As I write this, I'm on a plane home from Portland. One more night in my own bed.
Oregon is beautiful. In Saint Louis, every defining feature was made by the hands of a man, save for the rivers. But in Portland.. No human made those mountain like a mural against the sky, or treen that stay green although it is winter.
Living near these things must spark a different state of mind. Being aware that we are a part of this earth upon which we were created. More than just a system of walls and concrete, services and technology. There is freedom beyond that.
The people at Lahash are really wonderful and welcoming. They are well organized and have a clear mission and exemplary vision. Before last summer, their office only consisted of a small room in the basement of a church, but they have been given a huge, 100 year old house from which they are now operating. Much of the house is in pretty bad condition though, so they are in the process of renovating.
During training, I watched some DVDs about serious issues facing sub Saharan Africa, such as crime, corruption, HIV/AIDs and also about daily life there. I was able to eat a couple of East African style meals, which I think I will grow to enjoy, and was able to learn a lot more about the history and mission of Lahash international in East Africa.
On Tuesday night, I was really, really excited to be able to see Joo Ae! (For those of you who don't know, Joo Ae is my good friend from Korea. She just moved from StL to Portland to attend school there.) I visited her apartment and met several of her Korean friends, and her room mate from Houston. We ate Korean food and had a really great time! For those of you who have been worried or missing Joo Ae, she is doing really well and she is very happy in her new home!
I'm trying not to think too much about my departure on Thursday.. I have been trying not to think about it too much. For me it might be better that way. Save it for when the time comes :)