Sunday, June 12, 2011


I'm leaving this country in three short days, so I thought I'd share some simple reflections.  For the past week or so I was really excited to go home and see everyone that I miss, but then last night as I was coming back in a five hour car ride from Lake Kinneret (Sea of Galilee), I felt a pang of sadness about leaving.  The other students here are extremely thoughtful, articulate people who have seen a lot in their young lives.  I don't know when I'll have the chance to see many of them again, if ever.

Well, here are two lists about where I am and where I'm going:

I will miss...
  • the friends I've made (who are very different from me)
  • hiking in a desert "backyard"
  • copious sunlight and lack of humidity
  • free time
  • hitchhiking
  • falafel, fool, hummus, pita
  • Jewish holidays
  • field trips
  • religious and political discussions

I am looking forward to...
  • public transportation and trains
  • rain
  • American work ethic and punctuality
  • less secondhand smoke
  • no more border crossings or checkpoints or strip searches
  • pork (and Chinese food)
  • Christian community
  • catching up with family and friends

Mind you, I still think I'll get reverse culture shock.  Probably when I see Woodfield Mall and the surrounding area :P

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Birthday Committee

So today is my birthday :)

The past semester, I've been a part of the birthday committee on campus.  It's pretty simple - a few of us make a birthday card for people to sign and cook up some sort of nice treat whenever it's someone's birthday.  Usually David and I end up doing the baking, and since he's vegan (and there are ~4 other vegan students), we make a vegan cake.  For some reason this term puts people at unease ("A cake without eggs or butter!?") but I have to say we've made some pretty delicious cakes anyway.  We always joke that the birthday committee is for people who like to cook but don't want to spend their own money...which is true in my case :P

Last night, we celebrated all the June birthdays at once because there are seven of us June babies (out of 40 students).  David and I baked three kinds of cake - chocolate pistachio, cinnamon fruit, and chocolate pudding cake.  Fun stuff - we even made the pudding ourselves!  It was our last birthday bash and I'm glad I've had the chance to make everyone's birthday a little sweeter.

And I've been slacking on the prayer part:
Request - I'm headed home a week from today and I have so much to do in between now and then...
Praise - I'm so thankful for 21 awesome, blessed years of life.