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October 4th, 2009

Regatta weekend

Yesterday was a beautiful day. It was nearly 80 degrees and sunny. I was a volunteer at the Cantina Cup Regatta here in DC. I was sent off to retrieve cream cheese for breakfast and then helped on a Race Committee boat by handling the signal flags, watching the boats during the course of the race, taking down the order of the finishers, and then calling out the rotations for boats and crew. Since we were anchored at the start/finish line in our skiff, we had a helper boat buzzing around to move the buoy markers (the course markers) as the wind changed, bring us tacos, and assist in repairs and crew/boat rotations. The races were set windward-leeward (one marker toward the wind and one marker away from the wind) with either one or two laps.

Around 2:30, I left the RC with other volunteers to go aboard the Miss Ann, a beautiful 1920's yacht, for a drink of water and a view of the ship. After walking about the decks and checking out the equipment, I walked over to the American Spirit to rest a while. After asking if there was a regulation that determined which boats need to signal with a horn upon leaving dock, I learned some really interesting things about the tests required in order to earn a license to captain a ship such as the Spirit. (In my last reading of R H Dana's book, he was considering aspiring to the position of captain someday...) About then, the lasers came in to unrig their boats and stow them away on the floating docks. The Race Committee helper boat stopped by to drop off some sailors and offered me a ride back to the race, but I was quite comfortable relaxing on board the Spirit :)

I headed back home at around 6 pm. By that time, I was really tired with a slight headache and a bit queasy. I went to bed straight upon returning home and slept in till 2:00 this morning, when I got up, ate something, and went back to bed till 9:00 am. I'm not sure if my body was unadjusted to the warm, sunny weather after some of these fall days that we've been having, or if I am fighting a bug, or if I am simply exhausted for some reason. Today I plan to order in food, sleep, drink lots of water and tea (and soda, if necessary), and generally do nothing ambitious and hope that the slight headache and continuing exhaustion go away so I will feel up for work tomorrow.

Homesick

I watched Gettysburg this afternoon for the first time in a very long time. Mmm, I love that movie. The characters are so richly portrayed and the land is beautiful. As the opening scenes rolled by, I found myself terribly homesick for the great Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

I also found a new chord stricken inside. I found that I missed teamwork and camaraderie. At work, I'm lucky if anyone talks to me through the course of the day, not counting the sometimes enormous amount of email messages asking for me to do this or that. After 8 hours of cubical duty, I find an open spot on a metro car and ride a silent few miles to my station. Then, a dash home to spend the remainder of my day in a half-empty apartment. My own woven stories just make me feel more lost. Teamwork on the schooner or painting picket fences, on the other hand, are the kinds of things that make me feel "in place." "Destroy the place and you destroy the person." -Heretics of Dune, page 33

I have no right to complain, as I have many people who send me email, call, or keep me in their prayers, but this often-lonely urban lifestyle is occasionally draining to a preacher's daughter from central PA who is used to the warm country and warm company of home.

So, I strike off a few notes on the mandolin, look up crewing jobs on ASTA, heat up another cup of tea, walk about the room in my Signal Corps kepi, and consider taking out the binoculars to look out at the moon from my balcony. It's just a passing mood.

This all just goes to remind me that my true home isn't here yet; it's coming (Revelation 21). I'm not the only one waiting (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17) :) In the meantime, I can talk to my Father anytime and about anything (1 Peter 5:7). And in this waiting time, He's given us many letters to read in Scripture. I wonder what He will say when I finally get to meet Him in person?

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