A neighbor helped to take care of our house while we were traveling. Her daughter and The Maiden are good friends. It’s good to have decent folk to be able to ask for help when needed, as well as to lend a hand when they need it. Such as the friend who took us to the airport at the last minute — an hour’s drive, with expensive toll fees — when we discovered the bus was full. And he was on vacation! Also, our mechanic has become a friend, and he kept our car in his shop during our trip, even replaced a headlight lamp without charging.
• So good to get back to the wife’s cooking. Tonight, the table was set with sliced, baked sweet potatoes (slightly different from the American variety), Italian-style cauliflower, and cherry tomatoes, sliced cukes and carrots with almondaise. Yum! (OK, so I left the tomatoes for The Maiden and The Missus.) Just about everything goes good with almondaise.
• Have I shared this quote with you already, from Eugene Peterson? “… we learn to live not by our feelings about God but by the facts of God.” From his book published in the U.S. as A Long Obedience in the Same Direction. I probably need that line tattooed on my forehead.
• Something you can’t make up: In Oakland, Calif., a man is shot by police after resisting arrest for public urination. In that same Calif., just across the bay in San Francisco, they allow homosexuals to have sex in the streets. The first story caught my eye because in Brazil it’s not unusual for men to relieve themselves in public, on the highways, for example. That’s one custom I didn’t adopt. On to other, more edifying subjects …
• A friend of mine worked in the American Embassy printshop in Brasília some years ago. Probably during a change of presidents, they cleaned out their stock of books, and he sent me a box of throwaways. Among them, the reference work, Facts About the 20th Century. Listed in the section on “Events and Ideas of the Century” is the entry on “Communications Revolution.” Radio (1901), television (1926), communications satellites (1960), and the Internet (1990s), including information processing, are mentioned, among others. The last line of the entry: “It has contributed to globalization of tastes and ideas.” What a century that was!
• Besides listing a few prominent liberal theologians, the popes, and Billy Graham in the people section, the reference work lists nothing in the Events and Ideas section for Christianity, church, or Religion. Isn’t that strange? But that, too, is another Fact About the 20th Century and, for now, the one that follows it.