14.10.03

Hello, I am back. Its Tuesday. And while in some ways its good to be back, in many ways it sucks to leave. At the end of a month, or month and a half period, of not seeing Chapter, I almost get used to it. Not quite; I always miss her, and there are many times that I wish I could just hold her, but it gets bearable. On the first day back, everything that I can't get by phone is fresh in my memory.

But I am back, and I have to deal with it. Not only am I back, but I have had to hit the ground running. I said to Chapter at the airport that it's going to be wierd going back and being all of the things that I am not while I am in Vancouver; A student, a volunteer with Campus Crusade, a roommate in a house with 4 guys, once again in a long distance relationship. Its not that I am not those things while I am in Vancouver, but that I am not directly in those roles. I am still the same person, but I have a different hat on. Issues of being and doing; fun yes? So why hit the ground running? Well, I have a midterm tommorow, and another on Friday, and a bible study to lead on thursday. Good times.

My Trip: My trip was sweet. I spent the majority of a day on the UBC campus, which I had never seen before. Its huge, and beautiful. I toured regent, and sat in on a John Stackhouse lecture (a third of it actually; 3 hour long lecture, Chapter and I were just to tired). Regent looks really good; good bookstore, good library, good teachers, good system. They have some ideas and practices there that I like a lot, and look forward to being a part of. Such as transformative instead of informative learning, and teachers who care about the students and want to have relationships with them. They have a prayer room, with an attached meditation garden, which i thought was very cool. And judging from their bookstore they are very balanced (I always find most christian bookstores a bit... well not so balanced, to say it nicely). I saw some of my very good friends besides Chapter, I was even there for a birthday of one such person. Chapter and I went on our silence retreat, which was a really good experience. Something I was thinking about, since we went for 3.5 hours on our first time, instead of easing into it as some suggest, was this: Some practices you ease into, such as jogging, or piano playing. Obviously you don't get up one day and run a 13 mile marathon, or play some kind of amazing piano piece. But other kinds of practices you have to just jump right in; like hard drugs, you have to just go cold turkey sometimes. Or cold water (though some like to ease into that :) Sometimes it is a matter of perspective; I mean for jogging, if you want to get to a 13 mile marathon in 6 months, you cant really start by walking a mile three times a week. You have to, in some sense, start abruptly and just go jogging. So what if the disciplines of silence and solitude, in our day and age anyway, are needed in order to break us from addictions. Addictions to noise, addictions to distraction, or entertainment. Should we really ease into them? how beneficial is it? Maybe a mix of both? Just something I was thinking about.

We also watched some movies, and just hung out. It was mostly a relaxing weekend, for which I am very thankful. We played quite a few games of chess too. Neither of us had played in a long time. The first two games, I beat Chapter while only taking one piece and losing none. The third was very similar, but a few more pieces were exchanged. Then we played a game where I tried to teach her all I know about chess (which isn't very much, so it was feasible to do it in one game, or most of it anyway). It took her two games to get one move from a stalemate, and on our last game she almost had me if she had not got cocky. Learning entirely to fast for me, I enjoy winning, but at this rate it won't happen much longer. Figures, I should know better than to teach someone smarter than myself and expect to keep some kind of edge.

Hopefully that wasn't to many banal details for you. It was an awesome trip. As I mentioned though, I have much to do, so, I am going to get to it now.

God Bless

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