April 16, 2014


I don't remember how old I was when I first set my heart on England. Maybe it happened as I was reading through the Chronicles of Narnia on the living room floor and crying over the last page just because I didn't want to story to end. Or maybe it didn't happen until the movies came out and I began to learn more about C. S. Lewis. It grew as I sobbed over the story of Goodnight, Mr. Tom and was certainly already there as I began to read poetry and care more about authors who all seemed to have one thing in common, England.

I guess the more I learned about England the more I loved it, even from such a distance. In my mind it was a world of words and the place I dreamed of visiting.

I still can't fully believe that I am sitting in Burgh Le Marsh, England as I write this. It seems incredible to me that I have had about nine cups of English Tea since I flew in just two nights ago, or that today I climbed up two old windmills, one of them the only mill in the country still used as a mill and not just a tourist attraction, and the other turned into a beautiful house once used as a Bed n' Breakfast. I can't fathom the fact that the phone boxes are actually real and not just a red spot on the curtain in my room, and all that perfect picturesque scenery is really there, not just the setting for a film or the photo on a postcard.

I guess I haven't had any sort of adventurous stories since I got here, but driving through those brilliantly green hills and trees and breathing in the fresh England air is more than enough. I spent a bit of yesterday by the sea and ran down to dip my feet into the freezing ocean and ate Cadbury Ice Cream and made it back to the house in time for yet another cup of tea. Then today the windmills and a stroll through Boston and a Sing at the church to practice for Sunday Worship.

It's all been perfectly lovely, and I cannot wait to get to London tomorrow to meet up with a friend and possibly some more of the students who I'll be attending school with for the next two months. I know London won't be as peaceful and serene as Lincolnshire, but I have a feeling I'll love it just as much. After all, I'm in this story land of my dreams now.

April 15, 2014

Smile, You're In...

I should have taken a picture of the sign: Smile, you're in :D usseldorf! I did smile, as I have been quite a bit lately. I was really hoping that I would have more time to blog, but it turns out when I'm traveling around Europe blogging takes a backseat in my brain.

So in order to try and avoid a blog post too long to read I'll stick to two stories and hope I can get some more details in later on.

First off, taking a train in a foreign country would probably be a bit scary no matter what. I mean, it was Germany, and I don't speak German, and I'd never been to Europe before. But then my flight was delayed four hours and I missed my trains.
So I had to learn how to buy new tickets and probably paid way too much that the delayed airline really should have paid. If I was someone else I would have hunted them down and made them. But of course I just paid whatever without even trying to figure out how much. I even splurged on a Sundae from Burger King to try and make myself feel better.
Then came the adventure of trying to find a way to connect the family that was going to meet me at midnight to tell them that I wouldn't get on a train until 1:30, though of course the train was delayed until almost 2:30.
So I wandered into the internet Hot Spot room with possibly homeless people possibly waiting to steal all of my belongings. But I went in anyway and locked myself into a room with all of these strangers (okay, I wasn't locked in and I sat right by the window, but still...) and eventually I asked someone to help my connect, and while my computer never did connect to the internet the man who thankfully spoke English let me use his cellphone. Sorry, his mobile phone.
So then I sat in the Hot Spot room for a while and then left to explore until a creepy man started following me around the empty train station after midnight trying to talk to me. So I followed around the few people still there until I met the nice lady with a bike headed to Paris who happened to be sharing my train and helped me figure out that step. And then the man with the license plate helped me through the next two trains, where I helped the English speaking guy with the turban and accidentally sat in first class until the ticket checker kicked me out and I eventually made it to my final destination of the day.

Wow.  That was longer than I meant. Oh well, you don't have to keep reading.

So fast forward to Konstanz and I'm with my friend looking at the locks on the side of a bridge and this guy comes up trying to talk to us and get us to fall for him or something. And then this other guy came up to ask why the locks were there, and he got really upset that they couldn't be opened again. "But the lock is like a covenant, so what if there is a breakage in the relationship? My question is, how do you get the key to open the lock?"
He kept repeating that over and over again, and our "you don't get the key back" didn't seem to be a satisfactory answer. So then he told us his sob story about the girl who ran off to the United States and came back pregnant and how he would never be able to trust another woman again.
Eventually we managed to get away without giving out our names and phone numbers and without going to "sit and talk". So while the first guy sat and felt sorry for himself that we both had boyfriends already the second guy repeated his story several times and wondered repeatedly why anyone would be so stupid as to eternally lock their love onto the bridge. I guess my friend and I are silly for thinking the locks are romantic, even though they definitely are.

April 8, 2014

Above the Air

I think all of today I've had and will have my head in the clouds, in more ways than one.

I'm leaving. I'm actually leaving to Germany and then England and all these things that I've dreamed about for so long are actually happening now. Already I can feel so many stories waiting to happen so I can write all about them. I really can't tell you how excited I am, and at the moment the excitement is definitely beating the worry, which is awesome.

Of course, it would be nice if this itch of a headache would go away. I took Ibuprofen already, what more do you want?

Anyway, I'm in the Denver Airport right now waiting for my plane to arrive and load and take off, and then I really will be in the clouds. I had a bit of an issue checking in, but the united staff person who helped me was super nice and helpful and we got it all figured out and I have three boarding passes that will get me to Germany.

The scary part will be finding my flight in Houston in time; I have a 32 minute layover. Youch. I already have all these prejudices against Houston, I really don't need any more reasons to dislike that airport. Oh well, at least I won't be bored.

Then two hours in London shouldn't be too bad, and I feel at least a little bit more confident now that I can make it from the airport to the train in Germany and find my way to where friends will pick me up.

Wow. I just say that and my mind is blown away again. I'm going to Germany. What? This is actually happening? Yep. I don't even need to pinch myself; I guess that headache is there just to remind me that this is real.

Anyway, send some prayers my way if you think about it and I shall update when I get the chance!

April 7, 2014


I leave tomorrow. Yikes.

Now is the last minute making sure I have everything. Not that it matters since I don't really have a way of getting anything that I don't already have.

However, this whole idea of leaving so soon would be easier if I had a way to talk to people back in Oaxaca. Trying to communicate over facebook with my mom isn't working at all.  I don't know if my grandpa's computer is just awful or if my mom is ignoring my messages even though she messsaged me first so I know she's there. Oh well. Maybe she'll figure out the facebook isn't working and just call.

Well I guess all there is to do now is to stay calm as I count down to hours to my first flight. That and writing in my blog and my journal as well as the NaPoWriMo poem of the day. Oh wait, I already did that. Another poem can't hurt, right?

April 3, 2014

Ready or Not

Everything is happening.
Life is here.

I still have a few days in Colorado before heading off to Europe, but a few days is not a very long time. I've been trying to figure out banking issues, buying last minute supplies for the trip, setting up the details for meeting everyone everywhere.

I feel like the only thing I have left is to pack my suitcase for the final time before I go. Well, and wash all my clothes before I pack so that I can arrive in Germany with clean clothes.

In Germany. I'm going to be arriving in Germany in less than a week. I guess I'm just trying to wrap my mind around it all. I don't know what to expect though, and I don't know how often I'll have access to computers and internet, so the blog may be left hanging as I try to find the time to update.

But I am quite certain that I will still write plenty, even if you don't get to read it. In fact, I'm trying to figure out if I need to cut down on the amount of notebooks I want to bring with me. I currently have a poetry journal, a prayer journal, a travel journal and an idea notebook.

And this is the time when, if I was smart, I would go buy a kindle. However, I love books way too much. I mean, I know that my Bible is coming with me. So now it's just 100 Years of Solitude and the Ray Bradbury collection my sister just gave me. Both of them are really good... and really big. I'm hoping I can fit them both somewhere.

As for writing, April is National Poetry Writing Month, and this year I've decided I'll actually write a poem a day. At least. It's the 3rd today, and so far I have 7 poems, so I think I'm up to a good start. Now hopefully I can keep it up and get at least one poem, even if I only have time for a haiku, every day. And now the future poems will be all about Europe and trains and airplanes.

Leaving home is definitely hard, but I can't tell you how excited I am. Just think about how much story material I'll find on this trip?