Saturday, July 2, 2011

A Toast to Friends and Family

Ahhh summer. The season when we're most apt to break out of our routines, visit with long-lost friends, and do some travelling. Although there was no break between my master's program and the doctoral program, I have been fortunate enough to have flexible summer courses so that I can still do a bit of all three.

Joo of course got a jumpstart on me and has been spending time with her family on the east coast of Korea. This weekend, I packed my bags (a new record of 19 minutes) and headed up to spend a couple days with my parents before I fly out across the Pacific. After a nice conversation with Drew on the drive up, I met with my cousins Laura and Steve and their Baby Ruth.

They are currently gathering their bearings and gearing up for another assignment over in Montenegro; this time for three years (and with a baby), so I'm sure it'll be a whole different experience. I enjoyed hearing their stories about interactions with Eastern European gypsies; for some reason, I've always been particularly fascinated with gypsies. Perhaps its the wandering soul that thrives within myself.

That first evening at my parents, I also went to a coffeehouse to meet up with Joel Miller, the friend who had pastored our wedding three years ago. He's on sabbatical from his pastor position in Cincinnati and it was extremely refreshing to talk with him as we listened to some live banjo music in the background.

The next day, Mom, Dad and I drove over to Dayton for Matt King's wedding (to Kathleen Walker). The ever-expanding King family (number nine had the potential to surface during the wedding... but didn't) dominated the bridal party and shared their contributions through piano and dance.

The reception was held in a nearby barn with a delicious spread beginning with some whole grain bread and dipping oil on the tables. Before we left for the wedding, I was impressed with Mom's snazzy dress and predicted that she would get at least seven comments on it...

Little did we know that the snazziness would be magnified by Judy who wore the exact same one (although Judy was dismayed to learn that Mom had found her dress at a 50% sale).

At one point during the reception dance, the DJ called all married couples onto the floor and then slowly kicked them off based on how long they had been married. For example, he said that all couples married less than 2 hours had to leave (Matt and Kathleen), then two years, five years, ten years, etc. Mom and Dad made it to the next-to-last bracket, but couldn't surpass the couple who had been married 66 years. After the dance, Dad asked me if I had taken a picture; when I said no, he told me that that was the first time he and Mom had ever danced. My apologies to blog readers for failing to capture that special moment for you. As a consolation prize, I did take a picture of their second ever dance, magnified by the romantic outhouse in the background.
And for me, T minus 36 hours until I head westward for my long-awaited reunion (this is the longest Joo and I have ever been apart). See you soon, Lovey!

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