Friday we went on a group outing to the coast. I didn't realize how long it had been since I'd been to the coast and how much I've missed it! There is just something amazing about looking out and not seeing anything but water on the horizon. It sure makes you realize how far from home you really are!
So a few of us got up extra early to cook breakfast for everyone...I was on pancake duty. But because there was so many people cooking I ended up cooking them on a stove on top of the BBQ of all places!
After a great big breakfast we all loaded into vans and drove to Robbin Hood's Bay. It was absolutely beautiful. Probably one of the cutest little fishing villages in the world. We walked through town and down to the beach and spent an hour and a half or so venturing around. It was so nice to walk barefoot through sand, searching for shells and other such beach treasures!
After spending a few hours at Robbin Hood's Bay we started on our way to Whitby. There is a beautiful hike that follows right along the coastline all the way from robbin hood's bay to whitby. It's a good 7 miles, through sheep fields, cow pastures, along the cliff side, over streams, and up and down some serious hills. Half the students walked, and half got a ride in the vans. But my roommate and I decided to try to run it...I should mention she is a marathon runner...and I am not in the greatest of shape. But it sounded like a good idea, and i wasn't going to be able to get a run in that day any other way! So we went for it! I didn't realize quite how many hillsides we'd have to deal with, a lot of uneven, stone steps that you really just can't run up or down, so there was some stuff we were forced to walk, but those were very welcomed breaks for me! In the end I think we ended up running just a little over half of it, and walking the rest, but it was awesome! It you are going to run anywhere, I suggest running along the coast on a sunny, but cool day.
The only downside was I didn't have a camera with me to capture just how beautiful it was, but I'm sure I can steal some pictures from someone!
When we finally got to Whitby we went to tour Whitby Abbey which was absolutely beautiful.
I must say, Whitby was probably one of the most american feeling cities I've been in yet. It reminded me of San Fransisco with it's hills and the houses all stacked together, and all the vendors, the boat tours, fish n chip places, and ice cream stands. But then it had loads of little English cobble stone streets filled with little shops, tea rooms and such. It was like the perfect mix of both worlds! We finished off our day with a much needed meal at The Magpie, which has the BEST fish and chips and mushy peas I've ever had. I'm sure it helped that I was absolutely starving after my run, and that we were right on the coast so the fish was really fresh...but I have to say, if you ever find yourself in Whitby I strongly suggest you stop there for a meal!
24 days now til I'm home sweet home. I can't wait to see my parents...I miss them more than anything! I will definitely miss this place (it is all still so beautiful and new to me!), and my roommates (who have become more like sisters to me)...but it will be so nice to be back in the tri cities, at least for the summer. After that, who knows...maybe back to school, maybe just moving out...either way at least I'll be in the same country as my family again and that will be a blessing in itself!
okay, time for a run...apparently i need it more than i thought. One of the lovely little girls in sunday school this morning asked me if I am going to have a baby...oooh how precious the blunt honesty of little kids can be...haha.
It's amazing though, everytime i've had to step out of my comfort zone since I've been here I've been so incredibly blessed. Whether it was getting involved with the prison ministry, and forcing myself to talk to strangers about the gospel, teaching at our morning devotionals infront of all the students and staff, being so far from home and living with so many people, or helping out in the children's ministry this moring...it just blows me away. As hard as it is to take that step and just agree to do these things, i've walked away from them all with a completely new attitude. In blessing someone else whether it's by serving for them, or sharing with them, I find myself feeling more blessed than they probably felt. In putting my insecurity about my ability to handle children behind me I was reminded what an absolute blessing children are and how precious they really are (and of course what a handful they are!)
I guess it really is easy to stay where we feel safe and comfortable...in our own little bubble. But it's so amazing to see the changes and the growth that occurs when we step out from there in faith that God won't give us more than we can handle, and that in our weakness he is strong.
God is so good