Argile Ecossais Wallanklagebank

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Recent Life Events.

AS IF, Like gnarly dude (or dudette), i've had an AWEsome time the last few weeks. First of all
we had a "back to the 80's night" for our bodacious babe scottish mairi on her day of birth. you can see me in picture one here with the best i could do to make a "boss" hairdoo after just getting my hair cut from an arab guy down the street. (he did an AWEsome job). doesn't my hair look boss? and i love my sunglasses, borrowed them from Catherine. i'm difinately dressed yuppie. i kinda want to keep the doo.

This second picture is a pic of these bodacious babes are stellar to the max, like way dudes. the first dudette is Ellie and the next is Liv. they live with me in our little "corridor." and Gross me out, gage me with a spoon, make me wanna barf, these girls deked me out saying the wanted to take a photo of a "crap" in a pan for our pancake (crepe) night. i guess i misunderstood the accent or the pronunciation and she really ment crepe. we definately busted a gut afterwords. Word, it was funny.

These next girls are trippendicular. they are Catherine (white coat, quebec) and Silka (brown coat, belgium) definately some boss girls to hang with. and they're not posers at all.

Ok i'm like totally done with the "cowabunga dude" talk. (translate at
here is me eating a crepe with nutella (at our now offically "crap in a pan night." ) And if you noticed (i hope you did) i have alot of pics up, this means that i now have wireless net in my room. totally cool.

here are some pretty cool french friends i've met, the first is Hoby he's half french half Madagascar and then theres matilde my "marraine" or god-mother (also known as my buddy in the buddy system here). Hoby loves americans and all america is about, in this way he is quite different than any european type i've met. I actually might end up living with Hoby and his cousin aunt and uncle as i am looking for a family to live with next semester to improve my french. it will be sad to leave the Saggitire (sp?) but its a must for my french skills. Matilde is catholic and Hoby "has been lutheran since before i was born." they both speak english very well.
Here is a pic of my french (Alice (a lease)once exchange student at Whitewater high school, only school with out a paved road leading to it in Montana (correct me if i'm wrong, what about pony mt?)), and yes she is wearing a canadian shirt she got from a canadian friend who lives in london. they are gathered around the all famous (in france) map of the united states. it was in a recent issue of National Geographic France so alot of peps have it now. and whitewater is on it (pop 100). big time discussion peace in my room.

Next is a bunch more friends hangign out on my bed under the french flag i bought. you can also see my balcony.

Before: 2 days b4 the school election we got pounded by phampleteres. the after affect was overflowing garbages at the entrance. this means that no one even looks at the phamplets as the get them they just toss them at the first sign of a garbage and dont care if they over flow.

After: the day of the election one party got very smart and put a box out with their name on it to collect all the debris. nomore paper mess. and if i had gone to the election i would have voted for Idee because they came up witht he most ingenious idea with the box. no one reads the phamplets so put your name on a garbage and get noticed while keeping then entrance free from a mess of papers. I was litterally impressed by this. i'm really glad i took pics of it.

well i guess that is all for now, time to start on my tonne of homework. Clay

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Russian Holidays?

While recently trying to figure out how to get a Russian travel visa, i came across this site after trying to figure out if russians had long weekends (non working days). you can travel in Russia for 3 working days without a visa so i wanted to add the long holiday in there to make a longer trip. Anyone interested in marrying a russian woman? here are the rules:

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Small French Car and Basicillica

Hey, here's my appartament when i first moved in!

Hey here are some pics I am adding pics to other previous blogs be sure to check them and i also just posted a written blog yesterday. later clay

Friday, November 10, 2006

Volume II

Hey All!
Now I get to continue the P's.

I'll be mostly talking about my trip to the "P"yrinies.

Tuesday night (halloween) round 3am I finally decided on a train ticket to buy. I even used my new "Carte Bleu" my french Credit card with a little micro chip on the front that they use instead of swiping it (they still have the swiper thing though, but they like to use their "Advanced" technology more often than not. haha) Then I packed all the essentials in my hiking backpack and went to bed at 5am.

My train was due to leave at 7:05 or something so i got an hour of sleep and then rode my bike to the school parked it there at 6amish and quickly/ jogginly went to the metro stop a couple of blocks away. I was pretty worried because i didn't want to miss my train for the trip i wasn't sure if i should be taking. I had a huge fear of missing the train for some reason. I didn't want to mess up the trip or have to pay extra (important point) for another ticket if i missed it. I had never been to the train station. So because I didn't have any change on hand i couldn't buy a metro ticket! AHH, i just decided to hop on anyways, that metro stop didn't have the little chutes to walk through, just a few validating postes at the enterance. So i was freeked out about the metro cops coming by, but that was all I could do to make it to the train.

So after asking another couple on one of the metro trains if they were going to the depo and if i could follow them (which i did) I made it to the station. Where i immediately tried to get my ticket out of the automatic distributers. the internet said to do that and my travel book (which is actually out dated, i accidentily left my newer one at the laundry mat. it ended up in a friend's room) said that the people wouldn't be at the counter this early so i didn't even bother to go find the counters. Guess what!!! I didn't know the code to my new Carte Blue because the bank never sent it to me! And Guess what else? that is exactly what i needed in order to get my tickets. so I tried again and again, guessed 3 times on the code and my card got blocked. it was too early to call the card company. So i decided that i would just buy another ticket from the automatic distributers (important!, a large enough chunck of money) And there were... as is the French way it sometimes seems... Technical difficulties. no new ticket. So i was worried because i knew the trains were always on time and i just assumed that i wouldn't have enough time to go to the people at the counters to get help. so time passed, my train arrived and i didnt know what to do. I had missed my Train. This is the point where I go ok God what's up, am i supposed to be on this trip, should i have stayed home and got some homework done (which i'm quite a ways behind on), was i being selfish with this trip and all the other stupid things that go through my head when i dont think i've asked God enough what i need to do for every second of my life. So not knowing what to do i sat down and started to explain to God how crappy i felt about the morning. My worst fear was realized, but i decided to hold on to Jesus. And then at 7:14 i realized that there were people at the counters ("people at the counters" do they have a name? countermen?) So i went and got in line and the lady after about 5-10 mins of looking found me a ticket to Carcassonne. And it was Cheaper!!!! (OK God you win :) ) It left in an hour and i left with a little more money in my pocket. ( I am just realizing the significances of this as i am writing to you. )

So yea got on the train, i would reach my destination a little late but that was ok. We arrived at our first train changing place south of Lyons. Got on the train waited for half an our, went nowhere, discouvered it had "Tombé en panne" (sp?) Yep more probems. Had to take a train with standing room only ( I found a seat).

And i finally made it to Carcassonne, a middle age walled city!!!!!! Beautiful and Old!!!!!! I explored a little bit then went to catch a train for Toulouse (very big french city) . (from here on out i bought tickets as i went, i hadn't planned out my trip, it worked well) I called the hostle (very cheap dormitory type lodging popular in Europe, and in big US Cities too, very economical way to travel) and they didn't have any lodging so i just decided to go all the way west to the Atlantic Coast to Biarritz. I found the auberge (hostel) and luckily someone was awake because i arrived after hours. He went and got the night guard and he let me in a room. Next day i went downtown. (I was in Basque country now, where the Basque people have lived for thousands of years, their origin is not known... oooouuu mysterous) Signs were in French and Basque. They had a beautiful beach and there were people surfing in the ocean. Yes! The beginnign of november. the Surfers were in their wet suits and the people walking by on the side walk were dressed warmly ( i should have taken a picture it was very interesting). I went on a short train tour, got my feet wet in the ocean (while i was wearing shoes, i guess i cant judge tides very well, i gues i'm just a land lubber) walked out to all the beautiful rock formations sticking out in the ocean, saw big Catholic church, went to the ocean museum, ate oriental food, and a croque monseiure (sp) and bought a scarf downtown. I also saw, from a distance, the E shaped chateau that Napoleon III built for his wife "E"ugenie. Then i went back to the auberge dead tired from walking so much and fell asleep.

Day 3 of my jouney i waisted the first half trying to see Biarritz neighboring city, Anglet, and its beaches. I walked half an hour from the bus stop through town only to see that the beaches i could see were very difficult to get to, unoccupide and boringly flat. I didn't feel like lugging my backpack any further. So i went back to the train station and got a train ticket for St. Jean Pierre le Pied.

SJPP is the most beautiful place in the world!!! I took a beautiful train ride up into the Pyrinies (the mountain range between spain and France). it didn't look like much when i got there late in the afternoon but as soon as i found a hotel (no auberges here) and dropped off my bag i went exploring. just a few steps out of my hotel were the steps leading up to the citys wall. BEAUTIFUL!!!!! All the houses were white with red roofs (sp?) and trim, sometimes green trim. The official Basque colors are red, white and green like Italy. I promise i will get the videos and pictures of this mountian city on here asap. I even went to see the huge fort that was on the hill where there were more litterally overwhelming views of the white and read houses in the green mountains beneath a thickly clouded blue sky. I have never been in such a beautiful environment before. There was soo much beauty, i was actually getting sick trying to take it all in. (ha time for a Christian joke... I will probably throw up once i get to heaven. hahaha). I explored that area by the fortress. then i went down the narrow cobble stonned streets and found a pub to eat at. It looked like the menu said something about Jesus so I decided to have that (thinking... "is this like communion?" haha). I was not impressed by the meal. it was a little bit of thinly sliced saussage with some bread and hot peppers. It was good just alot less than i expected. I did however have the most wonderful Apple juce/cider in the world. I dont know what they did to it but it was treated some way to be creamy as well as appley.

The next morning i set my alarm wrong so i left St. Jean PP later than hoped for. That ment that i would not get to go to Andora (very small country between Spain and France. Which was probably alright because i did not have my passport with me. I might have went all the way there to just get turned away at the door. So i went back to Bayonne (near Biarritz) from SJPP by train to catch another train for Carcassonne. During my wait i went to the old center of the city and i bought a book about the Basque language. etxe (say éché in french; means house.) Once again i'm a language/linguistic nerd. (i definately want to take some linguistics classes when i get back to UM.)

I got to Carcassonne after dark and walked from the station to the walled City in which was my hostel. (speaking of hostels they are a pretty good idea, 16 euros a night about. though at a "hostel internatonal" hostel you have to pay for a member ship and 6 stamps(one for each hostel stay) (100 + euros). If you are traveling in multiples of 4 it might be equally cost effective to find a cheap hotel room for 4 at 60 euros (I know for one person you can get a room for 60, i dont know about 4, maybe my advice is missleading, idk.)) As I approched the entrance of the midievel city a supercalifragilisticexpialidocious experience awaited. (yes i did spell that correctly) I'll let you think about what that could mean for a bit...............................................................................................................................................
.................................................................................. Ok so what do you think? Yes as i approached the non drawable draw bridge on that dark and erie night a lady dressed in funny clothes with an umbrella stood in an arched cutout in the bridge entrance. I stared at her as i entered wondering "is this a statue or is it a person who is about to move." I was thinking "statue" as i entered because it hadent moved yet when all of a sudden she shifted, started twirling her umbrella and started singing in the most erie tone (perfect for the dark chilly night) "Some where over the rainbow!" As i walked by I said in a most insistant tone, "Oh, Tu m'as fait peur.!." Oh, you scared me.!." And why the freek was she singing a song from the Wizard of OZ! I had to stop and think about this all just inside the entrance of the outermost wall. I finally decided that I just HAD to get a picture with Mary Poppins. so i went back and asked if she was Mary Poppins, she was, (i believe i had seen a poster that said there was a Mary poppins play coming up or something, that is why it was so easy to identify her). I got someone to take a picture said "merci" and left as she started singing supercali-bla-bla-bla in the same strange tone. It was so wierd, first of all she was french so she had an accent which constricted her singing, then she sang it slowly as someone very pensive. So it was a "Chimm Chimminy Chimm Chiminy Chimm Chimm Charie, A life is as happy as happ......" as i left. It was a very perplexing experience.

(Note: The word itself has obscure origins, pertaining as to when it was first used, but the roots are fairly clear, as Richard Lederer wrote in his book Crazy English: super- "above," cali- "beauty," fragilistic- "delicate," expiali- "to atone," and docious- "educable," the sum meaning roughly "Atoning for extreme and delicate beauty while still being highly educable." This is the perfect word for Mary Poppins to use, being that she thinks of herself as incredibly beautiful but also extremely intelligent, which makes up for it. [by the way.]

So i finally got to the hostel. In my room were 2 Aussies, one Brit, and a S. Korean. All of which became my exploring buddies in The famious walled city Carcassonne the next day (they filmed "robinhood something or other" there.) I went for a walk inside the walls that night. it was kinda scary even though it was well lit. i didnt know what was around the next corner or in all those very thin windows. The next day I ate my free kornflakes with the S. Korean and he asked me what i thought about the book "The Divinci Code" ( i dont remember why) and that lead to a short discussion me saying that even my super liberal teachers at UM thought the book was a crock and that he should read the book "The Case for Christ." Amazingly he said "I will read this book." (did i already plug this book?yes, and this moment justified my whole trip (as did the first Godincident with the cheaper ticket. You don't meet someone every day as openminded about Christianity as this person, so cool) Next, he and I decided to go for a walk around the city. We barely made it out of the hostel doors when we saw a cool walled place where people were entering. we never went for a walk around the city because that thing that we saw was a very important part of the city. In side was the castle and lots of other cool stuff. ( i dont know if it was exactly a castle but it was an important part of the whole city. We went on what we thought was a tour with an englishspeaking lady (she walked us around and talked a bit) then met the aussies and brit who told us that they were going on the real tour. So we got in line and the french guy leading it said we were there at the wrong time. The previous confident-about-her-english french tour guide argued the S. Korean and I in. (go lady with the french berait (sp?)!) It was very cool we got to go on a tour of the ramparts. hopefully someday i will get the pics on here. After that we got an "audio" guided tour with some little walkie talkie looking things. After the tour we all went and tried some common fast french cuisine at a little place not far away from the Bascilica we wanted to visit. I had a quiche i believe and a mystery pastery. After we were done in the city we said our good byes (got a few email addresses) and my South Korean chum and i went to the train station. (of the two asians i have made friends with both had just quit their job back home and were traveling europe for a many-month voyage. They both said they would find a job when they got back home!! ) He bought sometickets and i hopped on my train and headed home for Lyon. I arrived after 10. It was a very chilly night, but the smell of burning wood was in the air (how that works in the second biggest city in France i dont know but it smelled really well.) It was the perfect (though many of us were complaining) way to make it back home.

Another wierd occurance happend when i got on the metro. A friend from my residence hoped on right after me. This is so crazy because we keep encountering each other all over Lyon. It's so crazy. we just end up being at the same place at the same time its like the 4th time its happened.

As far as the week after i got home i made an effort to be present mentally in class and to try to get some more homework done. I am starting to write my history final paper (I dont have to take the real test since i'm an etranger) on the French expedition to Mexico in 1861 that was made possible by the Civil War. I will also be starting to write my Roman Civilizations paper on the person and the history of Hannibal (the guy from carthage, northern africa,who rode the elephants into italy across the alps to fight Rome for the second punic war). Yesterday i also went to my Lutherienne eglise quite late and then invited Minhui (asian friend from church, on her vacation) over for Plantains (sp) beats, bread and cheese and a little homemade (failure) icecream. She is leaving wed so it was the last chance to see her off. I also bought a French flag at the train/metro/tram depot on my way home. I am proudly flying this dare i say "freedom" flag, blue, white, and red over the head of my bed. (I do not take responsibility for any French people I may have offended in the course of this previous sentence. haha i couldn't resist).

I also spent a fair amount of time at the mall this past week:
Bike Seat: 7 Euros.
Seat post: 10 Euros.
Security Seat Post Clamp: 6 Euros.
Hex tool set: 4 Euros.
Loose change needed to make the clamp fit: 7 US cents.
Memory of getting your Bike seat stolen while in your history TD on a wednesday night: EXPENSIVE, one third the cost of the stupid bike!
I also bought hat and gloves for winter.

Last bloggable occurance. The other day I was trying to say i wanted to get more done but i said "I want to be more productful." It took me a while to sort out this last word. Is it a real word? Not in my english-french dictionary. Productive. Sad.

And finally I want to appologize for the length of my recent blogs (if it really bothered you). It seems that i am getting more wordy and descriptive (10 double spaced pages worth). But I am fine with it. I may sound like Victor Hugo, who started The hunchback of Notre Dame with a hundred page background and whose edition of Les Miserables is about 4 inches thick, but i've been told by a friend that my Myers Briggs score says i am an authorative type of person (authorative, purposful miss use, meaning future writer of books.) . And because i am using this blog as my only source of memory of my trip so i dont want to for get even the smallest details as you can see. I appologize if you are bored to death by my blog. haha If this is you, maybe just stick to one or two paragraphs a day.

All for now,

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Party, Police, Pot, Pancakes

Well I have definately had an interesting past two weeks, and surprisingly many of the things that happened start with a 'P'.

I will start with the first week:

That week I went to approx. 5 parties...

First I had another "Pancake," as they say in Britian or "Crepe (french thin pancake, you know probably) Party." I made crepes in my little room and alot of people from my appartament building came and ate them and left 5 extra chairs. Its becoming a bi-monthly deal. I found a good mix at a nearby store so we make them out of that, but my stove is not that warm, it takes quite a few minutes to make what should take a minute.

The next night the international relations office put on an "interntional party." And, being french, they gave us horrible directions, we went to the wrong place first, but we found it right after that. they had a live band for the first part of the night and then "party" music for the rest, they played really good songs. I was happy to hang out with friends and dance, but i really really REALLY wanted to jitter bug and salsa and no one knew how. One spanish girl thought she knew how to salsa, but not with a partner. I have a long list of friends to teach how the little bit of dance i know. then maybe i will have a blast at the next party dancing with everyone. i didn't get back home till like 4:30 because 3 of us decided to walk home while 4 went in the taxi. i didnt get to bed till 5 i think (that is so late, i usually go to bed at 12 ish).

so i litterally slept the next day away and on saturday we held a birthday party dinner in Vieux Lyon (Old Lyon-its beautiful at night) we went to an Italian place then got ice cream. (her birthday is actually on the 31, the same night as Meg's which i kept saying to my self but it jsut clicked! I forgot to say happy bday to Meg... !!!Happy B-Day Meg!!!) the ice cream came in 4 sizes Simple-one scoop, Double-2 scoops, I dont remember the name for 3 scoops and then American-4 scoops! I was a bit upset that the biggest amount of food was called "american". obviously some people think we eat alot in the US, as in we are pigs, over indulgers, gluttons. Well i agree, we do eat alot and i almost bought the 4 scoops just to be like "heck yea i can eat that all even after a large dinner!!!" but in the end i settled for 3. Lots of resturants like to use the word american to mean "large amount of food". After that we walked across a bridge, that you could make shake by jumping, to a place called the Cavern where they had the best guitar player i have ever heard and he did the little trumpet thingie with his mouth when he wanted "another instrument." Made me think of the Riley and Krysty. Then i went home early because i had to reach the metro and because the smoke was killing me in the low roofed Cavern...

The next day i went to a different church than usual. It was actually close to the lutheran one I have been going to but i took a different tram. I had to get up extra early. So i got there and waited an hour for the service to start... I thought " I dont know why they started an hour later today." I found out later that their real pastor has been very sick lately so i thought that was the reason, but it was not. They prayed alot it was basically a Sing/pray type deal for the first hour and by the time the sermon came around I was tired. Basically i slept through the whole sermon, it was long. Shame on me... then i found out they had a little Christian Book store next door so i went there and finally bought a book written by the person who runs the largest Church in the world, Yoogi Cho of South Korea. Very good book all about HS (really wanted it to figure out some stuff in my life, that book has been a good resource to seek a deeper relationship with Christ and to understand things better, and to follow Him better, and to ask Jess alot of questions... A very good thing, it's called Esprit Saint mon Associe' /Holy Spirit my Senior Partner in french) I also asked the workers if they had the book "Case for Christ" in french but they couldn't find it in their system!!!!!!! That book is exactly what these Intellectual French people need! It proves how reasonable the Christian faith is according to Historical methods, researched by an athiest who later became a Christian because of his conversations with the most knowledgeble people on the topics. If you haven't read that book yet go to and buy a cheap used copy (by Lee Strobel). so i am very disapointed that we couldn't even find it in French, but it has to be so i will just keep looking i guess. After that the manager introduced me to the 2 new American Missionaries, we ate some middle eastern food and talked abit. We had fun finding our way to the "middle eastern" part of town. then i finally went home late in the afternoon. I found out later that day that the time had changed for fall!!! I finally understood why i was so early for church and why no one was at class on wed and thursday. HAHAHA They only way for me to get to class early is to believe that its the wrong hour. I made american pancakes for some Welsh friends that afternoon (that was another one of the "parties")

Monday was a pretty eventless day, i slept through my night chior class cuz i felt a touch sick and must have been tired from all the "partying" i had been doing.

Tuesday was the last party night, it being Halloween, I bought my birthday friend some chocolats wrapped it in X-mas paper and taped a singing santa candy tube to it. Yes in france they are actually so Americanized in their Christmasness that they had xmas stuff out B4 Halloween!!!! I wrote her a card saying "Fill in the Blank: -------- Birthday! Liv, From Clay. Answers A) Scary, B) Merry, C) Happy. (Answer C)." After that i went to a friend's of my friend Alice. We all dressed up. I was Cesar with a toga, sandals and a christmas wrapping paper/ leaf crown thing. I got some great pics while Alice and I were waiting for the pizza. We also played "answer repitidy questions" (as alice's friend called it-we basically answered quickly general knowledge questions that she asked in english.) there were 5 of us there 3 french, 1 canadian and I. After that I went home and stayed up to 5 figuring out train ticket stuff so i could start my first voyage in France.

Other things that happened were...

A few run-ins with the cops. The first happened a couple of weeks ago. First i was riding my bike down the narrow one lane road that every one rides their bikes down. A cop van was coming down the road infront of me so i decided to ride over to the left side so we could more easily pass. Well they just stopped me politely said that i was supposed to ride on the right side of the street, ok not a big deal, being the dumb american helped. The next time i had a less pleasant encounter with a cop. I was riding down the same road the saturday b4 all the parties that i had. I saw a cop car coming so i moved from the middle of the road to the right of the road. They stopped so i was like " what are they doing?" so i thought... oh they are letting me by. so i rode foreward, but as I did the cop driving turned the car towards the other parked cars blocking me off. So again i was like what the heck is he doing... And then I got it.. their was a parking spot behind him to my left and he was getting ready to back up into it. ( I being the absent minded professor that I am didnt realize that he, going to park, was doing it all wrong.) I also thought that it was a touch rude to not let me by, but then i realized that he wasn't backing up so OBVIOUSLY he was letting me pass on the left before he parked. so i turned my bike around and started to ride by the open passenger window And the cop driving completely lost it, he freaked out on me like I have never been freeked out on before. All that I could understand was that he wanted me to stop riding my bike and that he had something to say to me. now that i think about i am very glad that he had blocked himself in when he did the little block me off manuver. So yea he was not a happy camper, he was more of a crapy hamper if i might say (yes cole i do remember that from like forever ago, do you?) Once he stopped freaking out (my number one pet peve is people who get mad at me for no apparant reason (i guess i should expect it in all my flakyness, but i don't, its my pet peve (sp?) maybe this will be a turning point for that p.p.). And you would think that I being the "dumb american" that i could easily get by with it all. But no for some reason he thought i was French (I had jsut bought some fancy french looking pants recently and was wearing them... idk) and he let me have it. I couldn't get a word in I just had to wait till he was finished and then i gave my 'confused, i dont understand nor know how to express myself in this situation look' haha which I have used to tick off other french people ( once i brought a book back late to the library and i gave the look and said i didnt understand and the librarian at the desk left asking another librarian to take care of me... They must have had to deal with that alot that day...) but anyways once they found out i wasn't french(his 2 friends started to talk to me while our upset little french man cooled off) (i guess i could take that as a compliment) they asked me if i was english which i promptly said OUI to (woops i actually ment i spoke english not that i was english, i should have said no (non)) . and then his two other friends started to explain that i had done something wrong or illegal or what ever and that the rules were the same in england as they are in france. they said in french and english " y ou know the rules are the same in france as in english..." I told them that i was not english that i was american to which they responded... " the rules are the same in England as they are in France, make sure you follow them." So basically i have no clue what i did wrong and if i ever meet a cop again i will probably get introuble for it. I left the situation very shaken up and annoyed. Cultural misunderstanding in a very bad way.

The next strange thing that happend was that i encountered a person high on pot the campus court yard. At first it was interesting cuz i wasn't quite sure he was high, but then it just got down right sad. And again i was just my usual falkey (sp?) self so i took me a while to figure out what this guy's deal was. I had jsut finished talking to a friend (Daimen (spelled right?/From Vancouver Canada) about no one showing up for class when i started to walk away. Some guy did the little psit psit thing, called me over so i went to see what he wanted (he didn't look like a bum who would ask for money and he was already smoking so he didn't need a light (the most frequent reasons French people talk to me haha) so i was surprised) he started commenting on my red "Hermosa" shirt with the little surfer dude on it. he said in quite good english (after trying french and getting the a form of the "look" , i think) that he wanted to live the dream that the guy was living on my shirt. I was glad that he was complimenting me. What a nice french person... I looked at what he was smoking and kinda thought it could be something illegal, but it wasn't obvious because most people over here wrap their own cigarettes anyways. Then Harold (might be a psudoname because that's not really a french name, the french can't really say H's)told me to sit down and read something about communism and Heigels Dialectic (which i remembered from history yea!). he kept talking wierdly. he finally asked me if i wanted some of his "pot"... OF COURSE I REFUSED *taps foot with impatience...* So i was sure he was on something, and since he was so open about talking about stuff i decided to ask him a religious question. I asked him what he thought of God... and he only had the attention span of about a sentence, (its really sad now that i thing about it) and then i just kinda sat there with him going off about who knows what. It just got really wierd, he started flapping his legs and arms about and then i felt really sad for him and really embarassed to even be around him. Needless to say this situation went from an interesting situation to a very sad situation. I really feel bad for Harold. I found an excuse to leave, which was really hard, and prayed for him as i left. Another thing needless to say, dont let yourself be bound to anything like that, you loose your humanity.

The one good thing I got from this last situation was pity. I learned what God's pity was that day. Earlier, I read a reference to pity in an online devotional (yes Joel Osteen if you remember my story about him from my twenty till devotional, sorry inside joke, if you ask i'll explain it). It was one of those "oh that was nice" type of things. Then i encountered Harold as i left i really felt pity for him. I realized that he was like all of us humans. we are all sinners and we are helplessly "high" and unable to control ourselves and our sin nature. That night I was listeneing to my music and a song came on that mentioned Jesus' Pity. At that moment I realized that Jesus has that same pity for us that i had for the high guy. We are all helpless, stuck in our sin, But! God is not mad at us. GOD IS NOT MAD AT YOU OR I!! :) He sees us helplessly flailing about in our self made problems and he longs to help us out, to fix our problems. However we have to reach for his hand in effect saying that we really do need Him to save us from our sins. He is not ashamed to take our hand as i was ashamed to be around harold. The beautiful thing is that Jesus can help us immediately and eternally, if we just ask and turn to him recognizing the same horrible condition that all us humans are in. Reach for that hand! You won't be disapointed.
God Bless,
I Love You All!!

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