18 January 2007

Late late late

I made it back home! There are very heavy and violent storms here at the moment. I left work at 4 pm and I got home at 11 pm. Not too bad I’d say. Just for comparison, usually I leave work at 6 pm and I get home by 7:30 pm. The main problem of today was that the trains didn’t ride anymore. When I left work I was hoping to catch some train to The Hague, but there weren’t any at all. I took the bus to Schiphol and I met Martijn there who also took a bus from his work to the airport. I was really happy to meet him there, because I already figured this would take a long time before I would get home. I thought I was going to have to wait for a few hours on Schiphol, but that some trains would depart from there to The Hague. But nothing happened. We ate something at Burger King and we waited for about 3 hours. Then we heard from people around us that all trains had been cancelled and that there was not a big chance of it getting back this evening. We called Martijns sister and she checked our other possibilities. We chose to take the bus to Haarlem and from there take the bus to The Hague. If you want to know why the busses still drove and why all trains were cancelled: I have no idea. I think a train is much heavier and steadier than a bus. Anyway, we took these buses. It took a very long time to get from Haarlem to The Hague. By train it is a little more than half an hour; we did it today in an hour and 45 minutes. We went to the coast to all kinds of little villages. And now it’s almost midnight and I have to get to bed, because I have to get back to work tomorrow. I have no idea whether I’ll be able to get to work. The wind has gone away by now, or at least has become a lot less strong. There’s still lots of stuff on the railroad which will have to be removed before the trains get to drive again. We’ll see how that goes tomorrow. I called my work already to ask if they’ll be in time tomorrow because I might be late.

14 January 2007

Our First Geo-cache

Today was our first successful geocache hunt. You can check out the photos at: http://www.flickr.com/photos/charda/

We had lots of fun looking for the caches. Once we got to the locations of the caches, we found them fairly easily. I was the one who found them every time. Once because a pencil was sticking out of the ground, I found another one because it looked too much like the leaves and branches had been placed there and I found another one because I saw the plastic of the bag. I swapped a wup, a keychain and a little ball for some other small goodies I put in there. Right now my feet really hurt and I’m really tired. So I’m off to bed soon.

10 January 2007

The Church, Martijn and me

And here I am yet again, only one day after my last update. Not as soon as I expected actually, usually there is more time between my posts.

This afternoon I finally brought my bicycle to the bicycle-repair-man (no idea what that’s called in English). It’s gonna cost me a lot of money to have my bike repaired, but it does mean I can ride it again, which is very good. After that I went to the post office to pick up a package with the pictures I had ordered via the Internet.

Then I went to the Brothers of Saint John. I had a regular meeting where we discussed the catechism as preparation for my Holy Communion and Confirmation. Nothing extraordinary happened until about halfway through the lesson. He told me he had to tell me something delicate. He told me I am not allowed to take the Holy Communion and be confirmed until after I am married. At this moment I am living together with Martijn, but we’re not married yet, and we don’t have any specific plans to get married really soon. We first want to move to a bigger house, because we really need more space. After that we will save money for a wedding, but that will take at least two/three years.

I was very put off by this news. I have always known that the church is against people living together while not being married, but no one has ever told me that I am not allowed to take the communion while I’m not married. I know it makes sense and I might have guessed it, but if I had known it up front, I wouldn’t have tried to go to church. I wouldn’t have sought the guidance. It’s all useless now anyway.

I’m not sure what I’m gonna do now. I don’t think I want to go to mass anymore. It’s pretty useless. The church doesn’t want me around, because I’m a sinner, so why should I attend mass? It’s not like I will do the First Communion any time soon. I can read the Bible at home and I will download a sermon somewhere to listen to. I suppose I shouldn’t receive a blessing either since I’m living in sin. I’m not sure what to do with the youth group and with the lessons this Brother is giving me. I’m not sure I will continue with those.

I want to make one thing clear. I am not angry with God. I’m only very angry with the Church and with the rules they have set. I mean, I have a healthy, good relationship with Martijn. I am faithful to him and he is faithful to me. The only difference is that we haven’t promised to stay together for the rest of our lives yet, while it already feels like we have. It feels very much like God has blessed our relationship the way it is now. For the first time in a long time I am happy and I have peace of mind now that I live with Martijn.

Martijn is also very upset about this. It makes him feel like I have to choose between him and the church, and in a sense that’s true. But I have made my choice. I just don’t know what steps to take next. *sigh* Why does life have to take away the good things from me?

09 January 2007

Long Update

Sorry I haven’t updated in a very long time. I’ve been keeping myself busy in many ways, but these ways didn’t involve thinking about anything or any kind of reflection. I’ve been working, just regular days as always. I have played a lot of Guild Wars. This was a lot of fun. The cool thing is that this is just a very different world so that I don’t have to think about any unpleasant things in my real life. And my characters have increased a lot in level, which was a nice addition. On the picture you see the view from the car at the gas station. Martijn was tanking our rental car and I was waiting and bored with my new phone (a very cool Nokia 6233) so I took this picture. Looks like autumn in wintertime, right?

I haven’t done any studying lately, except from reading in the Bible. I should be making my exams tomorrow and the week after, but I’m not going to. I haven’t studied at all and I don’t know enough to pass these exams. I feel really bad about it, because this means I’ll have to take them in August, which is half a year after I had the classes. We’ll see how that turns out. I will do my Language Acquisition 3 exam soon, the language lab one. I have studied and practised so hard for it, I’m really glad I will take this exam.

To keep my brains sharp I’m going to take a short Philosophy course for 4 weeks. The course is given by one of the Brothers of Saint John and it’s about freedom. I’m really curious what it’s going to be like. It means I will have to skip one night of school, the introduction night when they give us our curriculum, but so be it. That’s a lousy, useless evening anyway.

Since last weekend we have digital TV. It’s so cool. Instead of the 35 channels we used to have, we now have 123 channels. We have this many channels because of the 10-day trial period. After that we will have about 60 channels that are a bit interesting, maybe some more remain as well. We now have Discovery Civilization, Discovery Science, Discovery Travel and Living, Hallmark TV, BBC 1-4 and lots of other channels as well. We can also listen to the radio via the television and we have 40 extra music channels. I’m listening to one right now. I’m really excited we finally decided to buy it.

Last Sunday we had a ‘Running Dinner’ with my youth group of the church. Some people had prepared some food for all of us and we travelled from house to house by bike. I was pretty nervous in advance, but it turned out all right. I borrowed a bike from one of the girls, because my bike is still broken. We had a fun day.

I haven’t been thinking of my father that much. I do feel a bit guilty about it. It’s strange that life can just continue and I’m still able to go on, and to make jokes and have fun, while my father is dead. My work just goes on as ever and I can play Guild Wars and watch TV and make jokes with Martijn. I don’t even think that much about my father. Only now and then I realize that he will never read this, he won’t be at my wedding, he will never see my children, things like that. That’s still the hardest part for me. And in the meantime, I just have to go to work and continue living, even when both of my parents have lost faith in life.

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