I started this blog to keep my church, friends and family updated on my year volunteering in Katrina recovery with the Presbyterian Church (USA). I've now signed on for a second year working in disaster recovery and another year living in Mississippi. It's getting good....

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

5 minutes in my muddy mind

My bike has gone missing. We're not saying it was stolen. It is missing. It's not anywhere at the church where it has been in storage all year. I know, I haven't used the bike much since moving here. I rode my bike about 4 times back in the fall. I almost died 6 times while riding that bike 4 times back in the fall. There are no bike lanes or shoulders on which to ride here and I've learned that Mississippi drivers aren't necessarily on the look-out for bikers. But I loved that bike, Mississippi dust and all. I've had it for years. It's ridden the hills of Maryland and the mountains of Colorado. And now it is gone. I'm choosing to see it as a lesson in the karma of free stuff. I've been on the fortunate receiving end of a lot of free stuff this year (three free meals today alone!). Maybe this is my gift back to the free stuff community. Yeah, that's it.

The missing bike is just another bit to add to my long list of reasons to be stressed this week. My roommate Brenna left a couple of weeks ago. My roommate Linda leaves on Friday. I'm not ready for this experience to end. And I only have two and a half more weeks of work. There are so many homeowners that I want to catch up with and so much work to be done before I go. There's not enough time for 12 cloned Erins to get it all done. The Presbytery has a plan to hire a case manager to replace me, but there's nothing firm in the works yet. I don't know when or if some one will be here to follow up with the folks I've spent the year trying to help. After I finish work, I have to pack and move out. I don't yet know to where I am moving. That's mostly because I don't yet have a job either. I've applied for jobs, but I don't have anything finalized. Urg.

I'm trying to keep my head up through all of this. It helps to know that there are people all over the place who love me and will help me out if I get stuck. I know I can always move back to Maryland if the job thing doesn't pan out down here. I also know there is plenty of work to be done down here. And I know that as frustrated as I may get, there are thousands of homeowners who are much more frustrated than I am. Yes, let's keep this in perspective please.

And now for the good news- the sun came back out today while I was driving over Lake Pontchartrain. It was quite the sight! I was on my way down to New Orleans to meet up with a friend from college who is on the coast with her church mission team. Through the magic of the PC(USA), a random friend in common, and Facebook, I reconnected with a bit of my past. She had me speak to the group of 50, mostly high schoolers, about what I'm doing down here. Talk about a pick-me-up! It was great to see my friend and really great to see people who were interested in helping homeowners. I don't have a whole lot of contact with the volunteer teams anymore and it was nice to pull some of their excitement and drive onto my shoulders.

Ready to attack another day......

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