I am home.

On Friday evening I returned home from a hike in the Mournes with some good friends.

And on Friday evening I finished writing two articles, one of which you can find right here.

I didn’t write a lot last week because, for the first time in a while since coming home, I was pretty busy just living. I had quite a few plans that appeared pretty unexpectedly; I didn’t even know I was going hiking until 11:00pm the night before!

I also managed to spend most of the week fretting about whether or not to do the TEFL course that I got on to back in June. I wasn’t sure of it from the start and finally, a week before I had to pay up for the course, I decided it was time to really think about whether or not I actually wanted to do it. You know when people say they’ll think about stuff but they never actually do it? This was not the case this week. What helped me make my decision was when I saw that it’s as hard to get a proper, contracted job in TEFL as it is to get any other job. Overall I was romanticising the idea of travelling but I don’t think it’s fair to do a job with as much responsibility as teaching if you’re only in it 20% for the students and 80% for the benefits.

Church this morning further confirmed this decision for me. Community is important; the Body of Christ is all about community and carrying each other’s burdens and loving each other, and I don’t want to run away from that. It is important to me to become a full time member of this community. Before the service this morning I got a group text from my friend who’s the youth pastor at this church, informing me about the youth cafe in August that will be on every evening for a week. He was letting people know that there would be a meeting after the service next week for anyone who wanted to help out at it; I definitely do. It’ll be a bit scary but it’s the only way to get to know people and to really become a part of the community.

I miss travelling. Oh, boy, I miss it so bad. I still get that uncomfortable feeling in my gut when I think about it. I still remember the smell of the sea air in Oceanside, the warmth of the pacific ocean on my feet on Coronado Island, the crazy inhabitants of the city of Los Angeles (in particular, of course, Venice Beach), the noise and the hustle and bustle of New York City, the cobbled streets of Boston, the sounds of the birds waking up in a West Virginia forest, the wide expanse that was the Cannonsville reservoir in up-state New York, the heat from the concrete in Washington DC, the small town feel of Grove City, PA, the stony beaches around Lake Superior in Duluth, MN, the mist rising about Pennsylvania, early in the morning… these places will always hold a home for me and one day I’ll go back.

But for now I am here. I am safe. I am home.

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