Monday, July 10, 2006

It's Always Something...

Is it ever! A few weeks ago, the server where many of the websites I've designed and maintain suddenly crashed. Or something. It took most of 3 days for the server guru to get everything running again, but he did. (Bless you, Charlie!) At first glance everything was fine, but I soon received emails with comments of, "My new page is missing!" and "What happened to the photos?" Several days and emails later, not to mention a few hours along the way, everything was back to normal. But it did throw off the schedule I was trying to make a habit of. That's life, though, and peace (or something that slightly resembles it) has returned. I am sooooo grateful. *grin*

I hope everyone had a terrific 4th of July! Me? Well, I stayed home, sans fireworks, and to be honest, I didn't miss them all that much. There were plenty of pops and cracks going on in my neighborhood, so it wasn't like I completely missed the sounds of celebration. Although there was once in my life that I almost did miss it.

The summer before my senior year in high school, I joined a cousin who was in my class and 19 other Kansas high-schoolers for a church group trip to Mexico. We stayed on a garlic farm, about 200 miles from Mexico City, so it was no border trip for us! We worked for most of the two weeks, painting the inside and outside of the dormitories. During the winter, the farm hosted a school there, and many of the students lived on the farm while they studied.

As the 4th of July drew nearer, we realized that we would have no way to celebrate it in traditional American style. We were disappointed, to say the least. We'd been gone just long enough to have become the tiniest bit homesick, especially because the holiday was approaching quickly. We talked about it, and finally decided to do what we could with the little American-style resources we had and have a barbecue, of sorts. There was no refrigeration on the farm, so we had to go to the nearby village each day to purchase the food for our meals. If I remember, we had hamburgers and what would pass for buns on the 4th. We also had fireworks! Well, not the type we were accustomed to, but it happened to be a Feast Day in the village, so we were able to get Mexican fireworks. I still have the one "sparkler" that I brought home with me. It looks like a kitchen safety match, but when scratch on a rough surface, it sends out sparks, much like our own sparklers here. Just those small touches made everything right for us.

The 4th was also the birthday of one of two young Mennonite men who were doing their CO service in Mexico, driving around that country and helping teach farming methods. We all became friends with Wayne and Steve. They were great guys, and we were so pleased that we could share our little celebration with them and honor Wayne's birthday at the same time.

I'd do it all again, if I had the chance, but I do like being here in the States for this particular holiday.

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