Storm Chasers We snapped this pic through the windshield of the car as we were leaving Kansas City northbound on I-29 this past Wednesday. I said to my wife as I pulled up alongside this guy, “It can’t be a good thing that we’re headed the same direction as he is, can it?” We passed him and forgot about it until we pulled in at Sioux Falls that evening, when as I alluded the other day, we discovered we had been in the neighbourhood of some tornadoes touching down. I think we must have passed through the general area in Iowa about an hour before they hit. We had a brief bout of heavy rain, but that was about it.

I’ve got a short list of random links this week, a few that I’ve pulled together this morning — I’ve basically not read much, or not at all, for the past three weeks. This is good and bad… a nice break, but I’m ready to get back at it. I’ve got way over the 1,000-post limit that represents the highest number of posts to which Google Reader can count, so I’ve got some catch-up reading to do. Or perhaps someone will just drop by and tell me what I missed so I can skip the whole thing!

In the meantime, here’s a bit of linkage followed by a final trip report.

  1. Calling all pirates! Bob Hyatt wants you! Good perspectives on church planting by a church planter. And I’m with Bob — there’s no such thing as “sheep steeling” within the family. I hate that term. Brant Hansen has another take on pirate-pastors that fairly roasts Ed Young Jr., the pastor who coined the term… just tellin’ it like it is, I think… but Pirate Young defends his position.
  2. Jim Martin is starting a series to reflect on what he’s learned in 30 years of marriage. We just passed the 19-year mark, and I figure there’s still a lot to learn.
  3. Emergent Village at the crossroads: the EV leadership is soliciting input concerning their future (online survey).
  4. There’s an update on the Allelon Missional Order by Len Hjalmarson, with some followup thoughts out of the book Inhabiting the Church: Biblical Wisdom for a New Monasticism.
  5. Laura Bush’s Caravan Force One — how the first lady travels. (HT: Jordon Cooper)) Seems to me a small private jet would be cheaper and easier.
  6. Rick Meigs (Blind Beggar) has issued a Call for Missional SynchroBlog around the question of “what is missional” as a way of addressing some of the varied and misuse of the term. I’ll be participating in this along with others on Monday June 23rd.
  7. What are Your Favorite Web Things?
  8. Spirituality vs. religion — the article says, “Spirituality is private. Religion is public. Spirituality focuses on feelings. Religious faith demands action. The largest difference: We define our own spirituality; religion defines us.” Agree or disagree?
  9. oldplows.jpg This online gizmo will make your photos look like they’re 100 years old or more. I snapped the image on the right with my digital camera back in 1894, or last week. I can’t remember now. Blame the Alzheimer’s.
  10. Power Tools for Fine Textworkingweird text tools… can’t think of when I’d use them.
  11. A few discipleship axioms which, unfortunately, are not so axiomatic to some as they should be.

Road Trip Report #3

As y’all know, we’re home now. The third and final week of our trip was spent in a whistle-stop tour of the northern part of the Mississippi Delta with a focus on The Blues Trail. We saw some neat things in those few days, staying in original sharecroppers’ shacks instead of cozy hotel rooms, prowling around a graveyard or two, and driving around some old Mississippi towns. I’m hoping to do a bit of writing on this part of the trip, mostly as a personal exercise, so I may drop some of it into this forum. In all, I would have to say that outside of the casinos, the Mississippi Delta is not arranged to be tourist-friendly, though there’s a rich heritage in the Blues. The tourists you do run into will be fellow blues aficionados prowling around looking at poorly-marked sites and appreciating the ground on which they stand. If that’s your thing, there’s a lot to do and see… but if a half-hour search for a graveyard followed by a quarter-hour search for the grave you want to see isn’t your thing then it’s possible the Blues Trail isn’t your thing either.

On the whole, our trip was more of a buffet where you sample a little bit of everything but not enough of anything than it was a feast of savouring any one thing to its full. Savannah and St. Augustine were places due a return, as was the Mississippi Delta, which would need to feature some time in New Orleans and Memphis next time, as well as carefully-planned timing in order to hit some of the major blues festivals. Let me tell you, it’s not fun to discover you’d missed B.B. King’s homecoming tour in Indianola by just a couple of days. Still, a broad sample of things is sometimes a nice way to go — there’s something for everyone, and nobody really gets bored feeling as though they’d already done something to death. I’d have to say that this applied to Disney World as well, though we could have done a second day at the Magic Kingdom and a day at Universal as well as taken in Sea World. Next time, Miami and the Gulf Coast beaches need to be on the roster as well.

For the present though, I’m catching up on some sleep (adding in some daily naps) and attempting to ease back into my home routines for the coming week. Only two more weeks and the kids will be off school for the summer, so I may not get a whole lot of “routine” before I need to adjust once more. And I have some writing projects calling my name….

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