Thursday, March 20, 2008

Get Your Pops on Route 66

If you are a regular reader of this blog, you know that even though the title is "Life in Italy" when we are in the states it changes. This blog is about our ministry and personal life. Whether we are in Ancona, Verona, Tulsa or Louisville. When we travel to different cities where our supporters are located we try to take in as much as we can of the sights, the sounds and the tastes. So we were delighted to be introduced by Vince and Penny Brown to a section of Route 66 that we hadn't experienced before on a recent trip to Edmond, Oklahoma. I had inadvertantly left my camera at their house, so on our return trip to Edmond, we went back to the formerly mentioned sights.

Outside of Edmond is Arcadia, Oklahoma, the home of the Big Round Barn and Pops. The Big Round Barn is from the heydays of Route 66 and is now historically preserved and cared for as a musuem and a rented upstairs loft for events. Pops is modern, but fits right in on Route 66 with it's giant contemporary soda pop bottle monument out front. Within its A-frame building lies hundreds of different flavors of carbonated beverages! My favorite is the entire refrigerator full of root beer. It is root beer, vanilla soda, fruit soda, etc... from all over the world. You can go in and choose several and take them home to try out and savor.

On the last trip after we left the Big Round Barn and Pops, we continued down Route 66 halfway between Edmond and Tulsa (about 50 minutes). We saw some other cool looking buildings as well as an old rock filling station that once housed counterfieters and was the site of a homicide investigation. Crazy stuff, if only you get off the highways onto the byways.... Check out the pictures below.

Pops - Arcadia, Oklahoma, Route 66

Big Round Barn - Arcadia, Oklahoma, Route 66

Old Filling Station - Route 66

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Internal Longing

So, usually while we are in the states, we go through stages of contentment. When we first arrive we are thrilled at everything around us, food, family, culture, etc..... Then in the middle we start evening out and feeling less tempted to see, smell, taste, touch and hear everything. Then our last period of time before returning to the field is spent saying farewell to things and people here while getting exciting abouting getting back to our other "home". Well, about halfway through our time in the states, the longings start. Tonight sitting here on our couch in Tulsa I had one. It was very short, but intense. I imagined streets in Italy that I have walked on and how I longed to be there. I am excited about the prospect of getting back. I am excited about the new team that God is forming. I am excited about what our new team is going to do once we arrive and they go through language school. I am excited about what the Ancona team is doing, as well as the other friends in ministry throughout Italy. I think God allows that longing to lie dormant during the first months of our Home Assignment, or it would make it terribly difficult to be content. In recent weeks we announced that we would be extending our stay in America from the end of June until the end of September. We will be balancing those feelings of contentment and longing a few more months, so that our team can be more fully ready to head to Verona.