Sunday, April 25, 2010

Recent Travels

Surprisingly, school has been keeping me quite busy lately. I haven't had the chance to go to many places over the last two weeks, but I still managed to fit in some travels - Last weekend we took another class trip, this time Belfast. Northern Ireland is still a part of England, and there is still a lot of tension between the Nationalist/Catholics and the Unionists/Protestants. We visited some of the murals commemorating the struggles, including Bloody Sunday. Belfast is also the city where the Titanic was born, so we went to the shipyard where that was made. What remains is pretty much a bunch of old empty buildings, and a parking lot where the boat was once. The tour guide was great though, he was so excited about the whole thing. One of the days we went up to Derry, the place where Bloody Sunday happened. We learned all about what led up to the massacre and got to meet some of the people who had lost loved ones back in 72. The part that gets me is that there are still hate crimes going on between the two groups. A peace line still exists in Belfast, which is a 50 wall dividing the city into the two parts. There are armed Land Rovers everywhere and the police do not mess around! But we were all safe, and didn't encounter and major issues.
Other than that, I've been doing a good bit of reading, writing and presenting for my classes. This is my last week of class, so everything is due. I leave on Friday for Italy, where I will meet up with Brad Tenharmsel. We will be hiking through the Swiss Alps! When I get back, I have two full weeks to study for my one exam. After that I have two more weeks, then I'm home!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Germany: This is Life!

I know this post is long past due, but better late than never! Last Friday I left early in the morning to fly into Germany where Tilman, my German friend who studied at Holland Christian for a year, was waiting with his little (big) brother. We stayed that night at his brother's house, Sebi. Saturday we spent touring Heidelberg , found an old castle with an awesome fountain, and just strolled through the old city. That night we met up with some of their friends: Micha, the pastor's kid, and Kai, the two week old Christian. We walked through the city singing praise and worship songs, getting in trouble with the cops, and telling everyone we were celebrating Kai and Jesus, it was such a blast! The next day was Easter, and we went to the breakfast before the service and Sebi played the bass. Afterward, we drove to Tilman's house where he grew up. We had dinner with the whole family and just relaxed that night. On Monday we went to the place Tilman did his Civil Service and visited an old monastery in the same town. On the way home, I drove on the Autobahn! Vroom Vroom Party Starter!!! Tuesday we went into Stuttgart, the big city near their house. We toured the city, Tilman bought shoes, then we visited his aunt. We played frisbee in a courtyard of a castle and just hung out. Wednesday we had to wake up early because I had to be at the airport to fly home. The trip was such a blessing. I loved being with a family again, and the talks I had with Tilman were great. Him and I are in similar places in life, and can relate really easily. The pictures will explain more. Go to the link up on the right and you will see more of our adventures.