Speaking of celebrating, 21st birthdays, it was my roommate Anna's 21st on Saturday, so we spent midnight at a nearby restaurant with a group of friends (ten loud girls arriving at a restaurant ten minutes before the kitchen closes=priceless. Be nice to your waitresses.). the next day I took Anna into Gloucester, a nearby fishing town (actually the location of the movie "The Perfect Storm") for lunch. We found a Portuguese restaurant and settled in for Bifana and another thing I can't quite remember the name of. DELICIOUS. I think I'd do quite well in Portugal. An art major, I thought she'd love to go to the art studio my floor frequented so often in the Fall, and my friend Dave was more than excited to show us around and update even me on the goings on. He's waiting to hear back from a $28,000 grant, and if he gets it is planning to expand the facilities! There are murals all around, too, testifying to the community's shared sense of struggle and identity that is valued highly enough to be displayed on alleyways and store walls.
We spent the evening at Anna's aunt's house. As much as I love Gordon, I love feeling at home in new places. I've had this conversation with a few people recently. Having moved often and spending the majority of the year in a dorm room that isn't really home makes me wonder what it is that I value and find important. And if I could define the word home it would probably be this: wherever the body of Christ is gathered. To be challenged by those who love the Lord and serve and offer hospitality in His name. We are called to be exiles, but also to find encouragement in our fellow exile. Quite heavy thoughts for a birthday weekend, but let's just say that Anna and I have made our own little dorm room into a home--it is possible:-).