Monday – August 20, 2012
Class restarted today, which means we’re back in Aberdeen. After a wonderfully refreshing weekend with our dear friends from Kirriemuir, we have returned to the Granite City for the final ten days in the UK. We’ll be here until Friday while I take a fantastically inspiring class from Wes Avram on Worship in the Reformed Church (emphasis on proclamation in our post-modern context…my added definition of the class based on what I’m seeing so far). On Friday night, we’ll get on a very long ferry boat ride across the North Sea to the Shetland Islands for the weekend, returning on the same ferry Sunday night.
The journey from Aberdeen to the Shetlands is approximately 12 hours across rough waters toward Norway. We’re telling the kids this is a “cruise ship,” since we’ll have a cabin on the ship. Rachell and I understand this is VERY different from cruise ship accommodations. It’s funny what our Scottish friends have been saying to us upon informing them we will be heading to Shetlands. Their answers tend to include two statements:
1. I’ve never been there before.
2. Why in the world would you go there?
We have not doubted our plans but we do feel the need to justify our decision to head off to the middle of the North Sea to a series of islands primarily populated by wind and Viking myths of the past. The ferry is located immediately outside our apartment window so we get to see the gigantic ship enter and exit the harbor every couple of days. The kids are impressed each time it moves.
Speaking of water, we went out to the beach at Aberdeen Harbour this evening after class ended to run around in the FREEZING cold water and have dinner by the water. Again, FREEZING cold North Sea water was a little more than Rachell or I could handle, but the kids jumped right in and ran around in the surf. They were having a blast when we got an incredible treat. A group of white-beaked dolphins appeared less than 50 yards off shore from us and put on a show for the next 15 minutes – fully jumping out of the water and causing everyone on the beach to stop. EXCELLENT time by the water. As Bryce said, “This was one of the best days EVER.” I have to agree.