Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Good Day

I was going to give a run-down of the day and what our team did, but then decided I would simply tell of the day through my eyes. I guess you could say that it officially began on a bus. We left Hsinchu shortly after the seminar ended and hit the road for Kaohsiung.

After snacking on cold pizza, yum, and discussing vehemently, not arguing, with Tim Chen about when and how to use Hast vs. Hath, I stumbled groggily off the bus with the team and we began unloading the mass of luggage that I will fondly call…”The Pile”.

I collapsed in bed for a few hours, then headed down to the world renowned, or maybe Taiwan team renowned breakfast buffet. I think I could eat this hotel out of house and home if they keep this kind of deal going. As is our morning routine, group devotion followed breakfast and today it was led by Rachel Hung. Isaiah has always been one of my favorite books of the bible, so I have really enjoyed gaining new perspectives on it every day.

After stocking up on the necessities, such as cameras, snacks, money, and a few stray monkeys, we boarded the ferry to a little island for a day of adventure. Wow, once we saw the beach, we took off. Soccer, football, splashing in the surf, sightseeing, shopping, and tandem bike riding was the order of the day.

The beach is one of my all-time favorite places to be, so after wandering through town a bit, I headed back there. Soon, the sound of the crashing waves lulled me to sleep and I enjoyed an amazing nap in the warm sun. Ahhh, nothing like it.

Dinner, I have to say, was probably the most “adventurous” experiences of the day. We were subjected to the “No thank you” rule, where we couldn’t say no thank you to any dish on the table. I experienced more seafood in 15 minutes than I care to experience for the rest of my life. Needless to say, I consumed clams in one gulp, no chewing. Ugh. I’m still glad I did it though…

One of the interpreter’s parents paid for us all to go and enjoy the spectacular dessert known as strawberry shaved ice and it was phenomenal. Generous helpings of shaved milk ice, topped with fresh strawberries and syrup, sheer decadence in a bowl. I’m still trying to figure out why we don’t have it in the States!

Tired though we may have been, the adventurous side in us all won out and we braved our first night market. I was dazed by the amount of, well…stuff. My group took off for the basketball arcade and we worked on our free throw skills. There were some definite champions, but we all had a blast.

The last stop of the night was in a sticker picture booth, where we crammed one too many people into the booth, and took what seemed like a million shots. I think the two guys helping us had even more fun than we did, watching the “crazy Americans” make goofy faces and try to all fit into the picture. They had reason to laugh, that’s for sure!

As we walked back to the hotel, I thought back on the day and was amazed at all the “little” ways that God blessed me throughout the day. The ferry ride, the games, and the nap in the sand were all exactly what I needed, and God knew that. I was surrounded by incredible people all day, and was strengthened and encouraged by them. What exactly constitutes a good day? I don’t know if I can put it into words, but today definitely was one.

Hannah Brandau