Ulgh, last night there was the WORST storm. I mean, it could have been worse, I realize, but still... it woke me up, and not a whole lot will actually disturb my sleep enough to make me actually wake up, much less get out of bed anymore (thankyoucollegeformakingmesleepallthetime). The wind was super intense. The whole house was creaking and part of it, I am serious, was even shifting slightly with the wind. It was crazy. Not to mention all the groaning of the house and everything. Plus the trees outside were just blowing around and all over everywhere. Then the pieces of the shed that has yet to be put together were picked up by the wind and blew into part of Fred's yard - quite far, actually. There wasn't any rain, which was kinda the weird part, but there was definitely thunder and lightning. I couldn't really see anything with the exception for when there would be near-constant flashes of lightning. It was terrifying. I had a really hard time going back to sleep. But I just had to figure that the house has stood for well over 100 years, and it's not likely to blow away to Oz in one more storm.
When my alarm finally went off, I was still pretty intimidated by the storm from the night previous, but I got ready for church regardless. The weather had calmed down to pretty much normal by that time.
Church was good, but before I left, I checked up on the chicks, and one wasn't doing so well. I was afraid it wasn't going to make it much longer. It was just really lethargic and uninterested in running around, food, or water. It also kept lifting it's wings. I couldn't figure out what was wrong with it. It was really getting to me. But all the same, we have 50 chicks. at least 20% are going to die before they reach full maturity.
Worship practice and church went really well. I'm always kinda nervous about playing songs and such, especially because Erica kinda goes off and repeats stuff, but I just have to kinda sazuki it up and memorize the chord progression and keep to that. The message during church was on the Pearl of Great Price, it was really good, but something I've been noticing about here is that the sermons are super short! We're talking like, 20 minutes max. I'm so used to the hour + messages of The Way and Solid Rock. I kinda miss it... I'll have to podcast them up some more here soon.
After church I caught up with a few people, which was good. I have yet to actually have coffee there at church. I think I'm a little intimidated by how they have someone there to serve it to you... weird, lol. Then Josh wanted to show me his new car that the church help him get. It's a super cute two-seater, silver, Pontiac Fiero. Engine in back, trunk in front. It's super adorable. Definitely a boy-toy. Then he invited me to go along with another friend to El Portal, the only (mostly) mexican restaurant in town. The food isn't really the greatest as far as mexican food goes, but it's better than nothing. He said he'd pick me up at my house so I wouldn't have to drive over there and wait because they weren't heading over just yet.
So I headed home, and noticed that the sickly chick was doing worse, which was frustrating. But I knew it was inevitable.
Then I got a call from Josh saying he was here... but he wasn't in the driveway, so I was confused. Apparently the road was confusing: and I'll give it to him, it is. Airport Road curves south into Manti, but it also goes straight into the Dead End of a gravel drive. We're down the latter. Haha, on the phone "gravel road....? Tiny car!!" hilarious. But it was fun to hang out, and lunch was actually really good. He used to work there, so he said to go with anything steak. I chose the fajita burrito w/ steak. It was a good choice.
After lunch, he took me on a local's tour of the town. It was great. But kinda sad at the same time. He told me about how many businesses were now shut down and vacant, and how many of the houses were pretty much the same story. Shenandoah is full of wealthy families, but people are leaving the town left and right and not caring for it well. Also, because there isn't much in the way of things for the youth to do in this town, most of the high schoolers are getting involved with serious drugs, or ending up pregnant. He said he spend the day previous with a kid a few years younger than him that he knew from when he used to live in town. The kid kept trying to sell him drugs. It broke his heart.
We rounded another corner and I kept asking what other things he used to do in town. Suddenly, he made a last minute turn north of the downtown area, pointing to large silos and grain conveyer-belts, he said: oh yeah, we used to go corn-boarding here all the time. I didn't really know if I'd heard him right... Corn... Boarding?!?! Yup. Cornboarding. You take a snow board, and climb up a grain conveyer-belt and strap in and go down this massive mountain of corn. Of course, you often hit giant pockets of air and fall in to about your waste, so it's kinda scary, but that's half the fun (well, that's what he said). I asked if he ever got caught doing this... Apparently all the cops go home around 3, so you just gotta know how to plan stuff right. Oh, the life of a local.
As soon as I got home, Jan told me we were going up and over to Randolf to the museum to an ice cream social - they were especially hoping it would be with home-made ice cream. I was up for an adventure, so I tagged along. After getting lost on the way with our lack of maps, and the sever lack of road signage in this part of Iowa (you just have to know where you're going... meaning you know where you are by land marks, curves and hills in the road, and other.... things.... ...?) we stopped and asked for directions a few times before landing on the museum. It was this really adorable old house restored to look like it did for normal life back in the 1930s. I loved it. It was beautiful. I also found an ad on one of the desks for spoon rings!!! It made me so happy... it was an ancient advertisement! It also made me want a spoon ring even more than before...
Then after ice cream (blue bunny appeared to be from costco or something of that giantly bulk nature), I checked out the wash house, and then called Lydia just to chat and say hi. It was fun talking with her, but once we were back on the road, my signal kept dropping out because we were, well in the middle of BFE going through goodness only knows how much corn. So I called her back once I got home. The ride was so boring, hot and tiring. The a/c doesn't really reach the back very well, and leather seats are not cool by any means. But it was alright, thankfully the ride was only about half an hour.
Got home, had some celery, and found out that the sickly chick died while we were gone. I was super depressed about it. It was so beautiful and perfect, and adorable. *sigh* but chickens die, and more frequently than that, chicks die... so, depressed more than I was before, I went back to my room to read more of my book, got bored with that, so was going to get coffee even though it was like 5 in the afternoon, but the cars were gone, so that idea was scratched because i didn't want to go out on my bike just yet. so i read my book some more before finally taking out on the bike. I went up Clarinda Hill and then back down, then went to various parks, hitting McComb up first, then Priest Park over by Shenandoah Assemblies of God church. I just bummed out on the swings for awhile and the laid down in the grass. Then I saw that Annette and family were over by the church, so I rode my bike in that direction, and we got to talking. Pastor Dan and Annette's house is literally, right next to the church, so we went in and had some sun tea and drank it while sitting on the porch. It was really good just to talk and stuff. Annette has a daughter who is right about my age, so I can tell she misses her and such. Plus, her other kids are a blast to talk and hang out with.
Then we went inside and Annette put out some various food items for me to assemble into a sandwich. Oh my goodness, I have not eaten so much since I've been here. It was wonderful. Just basic home made food, egg salad sandwich, home made jalepeno poppers, and ice cream, but still. It was beyond wonderful. Plus, the fact that there was the food combined with talking to Annette, it was awesome. They are such amazingly wonderful people. It meant so much to me. and when I rode my bike home later that evening, I just remember feeling soo rejuvenated and so happy, and so blessed to have been here in Shenandoah this summer, and to have found that church too.