Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Jeff is on a roof, sweating it out with Jr. High kids; Brian is in Ireland, exploring beautiful rocks and lakes and having lots of good conversation; I'm off to Russia in less than 5 days to learn more about the people and culture there than I ever hoped to learn; Aislinn's heart will be forever opened and changed in Uganda. We're all over the place, and it is hard to be apart. But when we come back together - in our living room, on our porch, with our guitars, with our chicken 'n dumplings - we will be glad we went only to come back richer than before.

Peace to you my fellow travelers! Come back with your stories.

http://euromulder.blogspot.com (Brian)
www.matthewclark.net (Matthew)
http://foodieforhire.blogspot.com (Jeff)

Sunday, June 21, 2009

thoughts from a Vermont airport

It's 10:07am (Vermont time) and we've been in the airport, oh... 5 hours... and counting. We'll be here another six. Delta was a mess this morning: angry customers, missing flight attendants, cancelled flights, etc. I learned a long time ago (after one big trip with a delay and rebooking that ended in lost luggage but a fun detour) that it does no good to yell at the folks at the ticket counter, and if anything, it will get you sent to the back of the line with no remorse. So we acted calmly... end result? Rebooked flight with no extra charge and $400 flight vouchers - per person - for a flight any time during the next year. Yee haw! And when we got to the gate, the rest of the folks (an hour after expected departure) were just finding out the flight was cancelled and having to go back to the ticket counter to reschedule.

Jeff and I truly knew we'd been given a grace, that God had honored the peace and thankfulness that we extended to the man who was working with us. We'd done all our rebooking after the line at the Delta counter had cleared, whereas the others from our flight would be amid a mass of people trying to rebook. [Grace] So many people were talking to the man at the ticket counter as though he were nothing, that it was all his fault, and in reality, he was working so hard. He helped us so much, albeit over the course of 2 hours, but in the end, our interactions were so peaceful, and we were given compensation - a gift - so we can travel to see friends/family that we don't have to pay for in the end. How wonderful!

The man at the ticket counter is George. We said a prayer for him as we watched the flood of people leave our gate with angry and frustrated faces (and we do know that it is frustrating). We prayed for George to have confidence and patience; for him to extend the same calm, but firm, self that he gave to us; we prayed that people would be kind; we hoped that the peace given him this morning would sustain him throughout the day.

I see George walking across the parking lot right now. He has a break from the counter. He's taking two bags of ice to one of the planes, where maybe they've run out. Apparently George is a man of many trades around this airport, and I wonder if the folks crinkling their noses at him know that he is working this hard, doing the best at his job amidst the general yucky-ness that can come with working at an airport.

Extend peace to others...

Yes, pass the peace, brothers and sisters!