Thursday, May 29, 2008

On The Road Again

I love driving! When I was a kid, I could hardly wait to be old enough to drive. Since getting my license, I’ve taken and enjoyed every opportunity to drive that came my way. Some of my favourite jobs were those that involved being behind the steering wheel of some vehicle: a farm worker driving tractors, trucks, and combines, a pizza delivery driver, a courier driver, and various kinds of truck driver. Well, skip courier driver. Not knowing the city very well, trying to find parking spots and avoid parking tickets, and having the dispatcher constantly on the radio pressuring me to deliver stuff ever faster made this one extremely stressful job! I was glad when it was over!

But I still love driving. And I’m glad that our ministry here in Canada (and in Burkina) involves a fair bit of it. Besides the stimulating challenges of eye-hand-foot co-ordination and trying to get ahead of everyone else on the road, I find it a good time for thinking about stuff. Lately, however, Kathy’s been spending more and more time behind the wheel instead of me. No, not because she thinks I’m a daydreaming traffic hazard or an aggressive driver (who, me???). It’s because I need the extra time to work on language data conversion and preparing presentations.

It’s actually kind of cool to be able to sit in the passenger seat with my laptop on…well… my lap, my mouse at my side, and the power cord attached to a converter that’s plugged into the car’s cigarette lighter. It’s also kind of funny sometimes. We often see people come zooming up behind us or getting ready to fly by in the passing lane when suddenly, they slow right down. We drive a Chevy Impala, a car that is also used by the police to patrol our Ontario highways. The outline of my computer screen towards the passenger side also somewhat corresponds to the outline of the on-board computers used by the police to check licenses or plates. Matching our speed, they follow along behind us in either lane until they finally figure out we’re not actually a police car. Then they speed up again and leave us in the dust (see, I am NOT the fastest or most aggressive driver on the road!).

Got a fun and busy weekend ahead of us. Tomorrow morning we’re off to Ottawa. We’ll be staying with our friends, Gerry & Diane, and look forward to spending some fun time with them before things kick off on Saturday evening. That’s when we have an informal meeting with the Missions Committee of Grace Baptist Church, one of our corporate partners in ministry. On Sunday, we’re scheduled to do a presentation for the adult Bible study group at Grace, bring the morning message during the church service, and then head down to Athens (near Brockville) to do a 2-hour presentation called “An Afternoon With Wycliffe” in support of a couple that are preparing to go as support personnel (in IT and administration) to the Philippines.

Well, Kathy’s gathering our stuff together and packing for the trip. I’d better work on my message and the presentations. Although we use much of the same material for our various presentations, I still like to spend some time rearranging things and customizing each one to fit the audience, purpose, and venue. And I may not have enough time in the car tomorrow to do that!

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