Hey, y’all! It has been a while since I wrote an update about my time here in Liverpool. During my first month here I hit the ground running. I arrived the day before Palm Sunday, rode the wave that was holy week, got settled in, and then got right into work. Time flew by and suddenly I was in my second month. At week six I hit my post-honeymoon slump. I was extremely emotionally tired and just wanted to go home. It was not a great time, but as my third month here begins I feel much better. There are still hard moments, many only made worse by my chronic illnesses, but overall I feel much better emotionally, physically, and spiritually.
I have so much to write about that I have decided to do one post a day for the next week. Each post will talk about what I do each day of the week for work as well as any experiences I have had over the past two months with that work. There is so much to tell all of y’all.
Today I woke up around 6 am when the sun finally crested over the roof of the cathedral and made my room too bright to stay asleep in. I laid in bed for quite a while since today is my day off. I had some laundry to finish up so at about 8 am I got up to get started on that. Since the Tsedaqah house is like most British houses and does not have a dryer, I have to hang dry all my laundry. Because of this fact, my room is currently covered in drying clothes. I am getting used to it, but I do miss the convenience of having a dryer. Although it is such a small thing in the grand scheme of things, I get moments of culture shock and homesickness because of it. My culture shock for the most part has mostly come in the form of small things. It is so easy to think the USA and the UK are basically the same, and in many ways they are. However, there are lots of small things that after being here for two months still bring me moments of culture shock or trigger moments of homesickness. It can be hard at times, but I am getting used to many of the things that have given me pause.
While I was waiting for the rest of the house to wake up, I wrote some prayer prompts for the Godly Play Family Service at St. Michael’s tomorrow. I generally try not to do any work on Saturdays, but yesterday I did not get nearly as much work done as I had planned so I needed to finish that one last thing.
Since Saturdays are my day off, it is easy to just choose to spend a quiet day at home. However, I am trying to make a point of leaving the house and doing something every Saturday. Today I decided to have brunch with Christi (my housemate and fellow YASCer) and Catherine (an associate Tsedaqah member). Christi and Catherine are my best friends here in Liverpool so brunch with them was bound to be a good time. We went to River North, one of my favorite restaurants near the cathedral. I got the River North Breakfast, their take on the Full English, with some minor alterations to fit my preferences. It had eggs, smoked bacon, sausage, a hash brown, and grilled tomato. I also had a decaf flat white and some amazing freshly squeezed orange juice, and when I say fresh I mean FRESH.
After our amazing brunch, we went down Bold Street and stopped in at a few stores. We got shirts and books at News from Nowhere, a really cool radical leftist community book store. I got a cardigan at Grin, a hippy/goth/second-hand clothes store. Lastly, we stopped at TK-Max, TJ-Max in the USA, and picked up a few things for the house’s kitchen and our rooms. Brunch and some light retail therapy with the C-musketeers were exactly what my soul needed today. My work weeks can be hectic and stressful, so this time off, my days of rest, are extremely important to keep me going.
After returning home, I spent my afternoon doing some small chores around my room. After I finished what I needed to, I made myself some leek and potato soup for dinner. I ate around 5 pm but ended up staying in the kitchen until 8:30 chatting and laughing with my housemates and two of their significant others. Because Sam and Ian are theology nerds, there were long conversations about the trinity. Although some deep theological debates happened there was also a lot of levity and laughter. All 6 of us were having a great time. I am so glad we get along so well because they all bring so much joy to my life. The rest of my night has been typing up this blog post and folding my laundry from yesterday that is finally done drying in my room. I probably won’t be able to go to sleep till about 11 pm since the sky stays light until rather late at night. The days here are getting really long, but that just means more daylight hours to enjoy with friends.