Monday, November 12, 2007

On being a guest

Please realize that I appreciate from the bottom of my heart the huge amount of work it is to invite me into your house as a guest and allow me to stay with you while I’m traveling.

This past week I’ve spent with Nathanael and Laura Lyons in Kansas City. Their house and kitchen, which was spotless and tidy when I first arrived, was soon cluttered with random notebooks and slips of paper and charger cords for my laptop. They arranged a nice little place for me to sleep in the office, and I tried my best to “contain” all my living arrangements over in one corner of the room.

The biggest causality during my stay was their neat and well-organized kitchen. The Saturday after I arrived, Nathanael and Laura agreed to host a small get-together of friends so I could share about what I’m doing with MAF. This small “get-together” ended up requiring nearly a full day of cooking and exhausted the far reaches of their cupboards for pots and pans and other things needed for cooking. They prepared four Indian dishes (Chicken Tikka Masala, Green Chicken Masala, Naan, and Lentils and Spinach) for us and the five guests. Needless to say, the endeavor left their kitchen in near-total chaos. It took us two days working in small bits at a time and at least 4 dishwasher loads to return the kitchen back to working order.

It takes a lot of work to host a person living with you, even if for a few days. I really, really appreciate it.

And Nathanael and Laura aren’t the only ones who’ve helped me out. Other people have been very hospitable along the way. Brad and Nancy Firestone helped host a little dessert gathering while I was here in Kansas City. Shane and Kristy Mattenley let me stay with them for almost two weeks in Oregon. Claude and Ilene Marsh let me stay with them at Bonita Park campgrounds for a week. And along the way Joel Tooley, Norm and Sarah Gerig, Joe and Valerie McMahan, Lee and Karla Adams – many people have opened up their homes and allowed me to stay with them.

What I’m trying to say is… a huge thanks. It means a lot to me. I couldn’t do this on my own… and quite frankly, it really wouldn’t be as much fun, either!

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