Sunday, September 27, 2009
We woke up to go to the 11:30 service at the combined Presbyterian and Methodist church. I have never heard a congregation more off key and tone deaf in my life. Even though it wasn’t a pleasant noise, it was still a joyful noise. Not a single person was angry or perturbed at the lack of harmony. It was more of a homely church compared to the cathedrals we’ve been to here. Most of the congregations here are mixed, but this one consisted primarily of Africans. The place was packed. They had a baptism going on, which was very moving. It was done just like the ones I’ve seen at my church in Gastonia, but it was a Kenyan family so after the formalities they had traditional Kenyan music sung by the women. It was really cool to see. Sadly, the service was lasting much longer than 12:30, so we had to leave before the sermon.
However, I did enjoy the reading of Mark 11: 12. At first I was not pleased with it. I was frustrated with the words of the Bible offering an unpleasant picture of Jesus and no explanation. I left the Book open in my lap and continued to think about it. Sometimes I feel like the Bible, while the Word of God, is too often the source of confusion and conflict. Sometimes I feel it would be better to resolve to rely strictly on faith and feeling than interpretation of the Word. Then I read further through verse 25. The explanation was given in the form of a parable; one I had not ever remembered hearing. I laughed and thanked the Lord for His resolution in my conflict with the chapter. It was almost like His way of letting me think through the meaning instead of just reading through it.
I ate a mini calzone before hitting the misty wet streets of Galway in promotion of Eddie Rockets. Today was the worst weather day so far, but it never fully rained, which I was grateful for.
I saw three dogs today creating quite a spectacle. They were chained to each other (nothing else) and waiting outside of a bookshop for their master. The smallest was a white and tan Jack Russell, the medium sized dog was a black and white Collie of some sort, and the extra large dog was a gray Irish Wolfhound. He was HUGE – about the size of a thin pony. Their personalities differed as well. I of course spent time lingering around the bookstore for as long as I could. The wolfhound’s loyalty to his master worked well in keeping the other two (chained to him) in the same place. The wolfhound had a gorgeous face like Frisbee’s, but it was very solemn. He seemed to have all the wisdom of the world contained inside him. He stayed poised with paws crossed at the entrance of the door at all times, but never going in. He received petting in a friendly way, but never took his eyes off the spot he last saw his master. The medium sized dog was content to sit beside the wolfhound. He seemed to care less about human attention and more interested in watching everything going on. The Jack Russell was the friendliest, demanding attention from every passerby. His leash was his shackles. Had he been able to pull the weight of the other two holding him back to wander amongst the crowd (but not straying too far) I’m certain he would have. The three began to attract quite a crowd photographing their cuteness. The wolfhound was becoming impatient at his master’s absence and stood up to poke his head inside the door, but he never stepped over the threshold. It was as if invisible fencing (same as his master’s command to him) was preventing him. Finally, the man came out and all three bounced up with energy and devotion. I hope one day I can have that kind of relationship with a dog.
I also saw the opposite level of respect in behavior today. The punk children of Ireland seem to be more numerous than I’ve encountered elsewhere, but I also do not have contact with too many teenagers anymore at home. Punk is defined in two ways: the style of clothing, haircuts and attitude as well as behavior. Many of them would have their “ears boxed” back in the day. After walking around for 6 hours, my nerves with them are limited. Some aren’t so bad, but others are worse and they are our primary demographic to target. Today a group of them set fire to a hat in the square where they also placed an aerosol can. Zach and I were walking by the spectacle when I mentioned it was likely to explode. I wanted to watch at a safe distance (I admit I find some of their antics amusing, but not how some of them address others). Sure enough the thing exploded with a loud bang. As far as I know the square has not burned down yet.
When we took our break today I ordered a hot chocolate and a Cesar salad with marinated grilled chicken. Healthiest thing so far except the bottom was swimming in dressing, so I avoided a few soaked leaves.
The last half of the shift seemed to drag on forever, but when it was finally complete I ran back to the apartment to get my camera. I wanted to take pictures of the store windows and some of the crazy fashions they advertise.
Zach and I went to No Banjo’s last performance tonight. We picked up Monica who had baked some cookies today. After giving up smoking and candy, she has taken to baking to fulfill any kind of urges. I like that idea very much. Not only do I get tasty treats, but I get recipes!!
We saw Katelyn and Hilary who were over from the island for supply stocking and a night on the town. We also saw Marta and Demelsa who stood with us for awhile. The place was packed and No Banjo gave an amazing performance that lasted a hour longer than normal. I was sooo tired. I found a stool to sit down on for a little bit, but I wanted to stay for the end of the performance. It kept going and going. They opened a champagne bottle on the crowd (I avoided it) and destroyed a banjo on stage (hence: no banjo). Sadly, some idiot stole a harmonica and hat from the musicians off stage when the show was over. I hope it gets returned. I actually took something as well, but it was a poster from the bar advertising for No Banjo. It was paper, there were lots of them and I felt justified…kind of. It’s hanging on my wall now!