Church and a Lawnmower

Yesterday I mowed the lawns around the house. Usually my brother-in-law does it, but he was busy helping his girlfriend and her mom do yard work at their house, and after being offered the chance to try last week (and enjoying it) I decided to take the opportunity again.

I got out my iPod and started the Christian playlist, thinking I would have my own mini-pentecostal service while mowing the lawns. I thought that an awesome song would come on, that I’d just rock out thinking how awesome God is. I thought that God and I would have a moment, and how cool it would be to blog about what happened. I mean, it’s not the most normal place for God and Man to connect..

But it didn’t happen. I guess God knew that I would have used it for a completely wrong purpose, making it about me rather than about him. Don’t we do that all too often? When things go wrong, it’s God’s fault. When things go right, we’re such awesome people that do such a good job. Right? How often has God done something good in your life and you’ve shifted the focus from the greatness and awesomeness of God onto yourself, whether it be by taking all the credit or by focussing on how funny it was to happen when/where it did, with the intention of building self and intentionally or otherwise detracting from whatever it was that God did for you.

Yesterday I got my full Virginia drivers license, and am now fully prepared to drive to work in Washington DC alone every day (assuming I get the job I’m interviewing for tommorrow morning). Speaking of which, I’ll have another 4 hours tomorrow to church alone (well, with my wife), and if I get the job I’ll also have 4 hours a day to church (really alone!) as well.

In other news, last night I made two phone calls to New Zealand, the first being to my Mum, and got to talk to my Dad and my brother as well. Mum was doing well, Dad was getting over a cold/flu thing, and my brother was doing pretty well also. I asked my brother if he had given any thought to what he wanted to do in the future (work/study-wise), and he said “Film and Media, or higher English” and on asking to clarify the higher English, he suggested he would like to write fan-fictions (fiction stories using famous characters in a prequel/sequel-type situation, think a continuation of Star Wars or the Matrix, or episodes of CSI or Law and Order). I suggested he could try to create his own characters and write something original as well, or even go so far as writing stick-figure based cartoons, since he described himself as a poor drawing artist.

The second call was to my only living Grandma (my Mum’s Mum passed away nearly a year ago now), again to wish her a happy mothers day and to catch up a little. She also had a chance to talk, for the first time, to her grand-daughter-in-law. I was worried about calling them after Dad mentioned that my Grandad wasn’t doing well mentally, warning me that “..if the man who answers the phone sounds like Grandad, but doesn’t recognise or seem to know who you are, don’t be surprised or upset..” He’s in his 9th decade (80’s ;-)), and after a stroke or two these things tend to happen! I was rather pleased when he did answer and was very quick at responding to what I was needing, seeming at least to recognise me (may have had something to do with sounding like my Dad and calling him Grandad?)

We’re also house-sitting for a friend (who was housesitting and had to go to New York with her family for the weekend). It’s a pretty awesome house, we’re planning to take photos of some cool things we’d like to try to make or remember when our turn to decorate comes around. They don’t have a lot of things on display, so there is minimal clutter, but what they do have is high up and generally pet friendly.

Lastly I wanted to mention that we’re going to stop in at Front Royal on the way home from the interview tomorrow and check it out for size and shopping facilities etc etc. It’s apparently somewhere between Broadway and Harrisonburg for size with a population of around 13-14,000 people and we wanted to get a feel for what was there and what was close by compared to what we would have to drive for.

Anyway, thats more than enough rambling from me for another day or two. Happy Mothers Day!

Dreaaaam.. Dream Dream Dream!

I had the weirdest (and historically inaccurate) dream last night.

I am going to share it here for the intrigue and amusement of any and all who read it.

Now, I don’t know how, but I travelled back in time (and location?) and ended up in 1920’s England, at the primary/elementary school of my Grandad. I had my big camera with me, which was clearly out of place (Digital camera pre 1990 is very out of place!) in the time period so I was trying to take photos and being discreet as possible.

Anyway, I was in a lunchroom kinda thing, it was very grey and dull, and my 7-8 year old grandfather was at a table with 3 other boys talking quietly (I was across the room, my big 22 year old self). I recognized him almost immediately, as he looked pretty much like the photos of seen of my Dad as a young boy, and a few times he turned his head I noticed characteristics and resemblances of how he looks and acts as I’ve known him. The people I was there with decided it was time to leave, but I mustered up the courage to ask my young grandfather for confirmation that he was who I thought he was.

“Is your name Brian?”

“Yes, it is.”

“That’s your middle name isn’t it?”

“Not any more!”

“Do you mind if I ask what your first name used to be?”

“Coraline!” (I have NO clue where that came from.. I saw the movie like…a month ago and haven’t really thought about it since. Now that I think about it though, I played Tic-tac-toe/naughts and crosses with a 5 year old girl the other night, only we used pink and blue ‘buttons’ on a board of 9 squares, each containing the picture of a character from the movie. I digress..)

At this point I really had to follow the rest of my group out the door (they were all late teens/adults) but I took the opportunity to snap some more photos of my granddad across the room, he wasn’t watching having returned to the conversation with his friends.

I was led outside, and it was kindof like a gameshow. I’m not sure if I’ve had similar dreams before, or if it really is something I’ve seen on TV or in a movie, but I was to be given challenges to complete either for money or for the people I was working with (they were all teens I think) to live, big difference but I don’t remember which. May have even been both!

It was then that I realized there was snow on the ground, and my first challenge was related to one of the people on my team sliding around the school, I just wasn’t allowed to let him damage any classrooms in any way. You can probably tell by now that while my dreams are fairly specific, there isn’t a lot of detail as to how things happen, I just know they do. I guided the guy between buildings and managed to get him out onto the open sports fields, which I realised too late was a bad thing to do, as the fields themselves were/are a classroom (for PhysEd! Whether that even existed in the 20’s I doubt… We’d also slid along the inside edge of a clearly marked football field). Anyway, it was at this point where the host/gamemaster was walking along the field either with cameramen or henchmen and was about to reveal some kind of information when I woke up.

It was a weird night last night – I wasn’t sleepy, then I was really sleepy so I rolled over to sleep and couldn’t, then I got awake and somewhere in that mix (and a lot of “Are you OK?’s” from Kelly (who was also having a difficult time sleeping)) I fell asleep. Then had to get up at around 8:30 to go let the chickens out (I HATE CHICKENS.. more on them later) and came back and fell asleep awkwardly on the yellow chair, where the dream continued.

So there you have it, my weird dream of weirdness, laugh or analyze, or if you REALLY must, do both 😉