So England is great... but not without it's faults. I am having a brief moment of despair.
My health is improving. I am still coughing from time to time, but nothing life altering. i actually can make it through the night without coughing, but around 2pm I'll usually make up for it with a couple hours of "hacking." I was incredibly blessed to be given week extensions with my two history classes that had papers due this week. I am however going to try to get them done by friday because this weekend is another two days worth of daytrips around England - Canterbury on Saturday and Stonehenge and Bath on Sunday!!
But aside from my health, England is not doing so well in my eyes. First is church... St John's is great and people are being so kind to reach out to me and make me feel involved, however I miss my church. I miss knowing the words to the worship songs, I miss our talented worship team and the amazing singers and musicians Open Door is so lucky to have. I miss the way we word things... I never understood when people mentioned that we had "Open Door-isms," but not having them has made me miss them. They make me feel safe and comfortable. I miss messages about identity. I honestly got a little tired of them after a while and was looking forward to something a little different over here... but I realize over here that the message of "identity" is the center of everything Christ told us about living this life... every other message should come from a place of affirming the identity we have in our Savior... and I miss that reminder every Sunday. I miss my friends and the quirky sense of humor we have. I miss making pop-culture references of references to arrested development or some random movie and have people get it right away!
The second thing I am frustrated here in England is the food. Actually it's not English food specifically, it's just the food I am relegated to here at uni. I am sick to death of dining hall food, and restaurant food, and pub food, and fast food, and store bough sandwiches, and bottles of water. I want HOME-MADE FOOD!!! I want my mom's cooking... or at least cooking done in an individual sized oven and not industrial ovens. I want my food made with love and spices and salt. I miss MILK!!! They have milk here, but not good milk. All the milk here is terrible. The fridges are never cold enough for it. I have never been able to trust milk anywhere else but from my fridge. Even milk from my friends' houses back home was suspect - it's nothing personal, just a quirk, but here I can't stand the milk. So, I have been without milk for some time, which if you know me well enough, you know that is a VERY SERIOUS ISSUE.
So what have I been doing to cope... drowning my sorrows in cheesy movies (ie Twilight, Interview with the Vampire, and Queen of the Damned). I have also read the entire available manuscript of Midnight Sun (the retelling of the events in Twilight through Edward's perspective). As you can see I am on a very serious Vampire kick... I am attributing it to the rainy, cloudy, despairing weather we've been having, or it could be that I feel like England is sucking my soul the last day or so. regardless I have wallowed and cried and tried to see the brighter side of life, which again is hard when you only see the sun for at most an hour a day.
I know this emotional run is entirely a phase and give me a couple more days and I'll be happy again, but for right now, I'm yucky.
But this afternoon there was a ray of VERY BIG HOPE!!! or it actually could be cause for further despair... but here it is.
I GOT A BOX!!!! The box my parents sent me arrived finally today after over a WEEK of waiting and waiting - the snow delayed the package a couple days longer than expected. I ran up to my room and called my mom so she could be on the phone when I got it! Inside to my delight it smelled like home... it made me tear up a little bit. I got my bathrobe (showers will be so much less of a hassle), two long sleeve shirts - black and white (I can now wear my Tshirts), a dress (it was a cute dress and I wanted it, cereal bowls (I couldn't find plastic cereal bowls anywhere and now I have some), "The Shack," Burts Bees chapstick (my lips never felt so relieved), SUNFLOWER SEEDS (sweet nectar of the gods), valentines chocolates, and a card with a picture of Emolyn and Tyler and my Dad!! I Love my family so much! It was perfect timing that my box arrived today. I needed it desperately :)