Last weekend was a fun-filled one, with a ski trip to Wintergreen with Grace Covenant Presbyterian as well as a visit to Richmond by our good friend, Kevin O’Mara.
The ski trip was a blast, even though a few of the kids backed out at last minute. The people that went, both teenagers and adults, were there to get to know one another, enjoy the great outdoors, and ski/snowboard. That made my job of “youth leader” very easy. Of course, Angela was actually there for the use of Wintergreens fancy spa facilities, but she did help with making breakfast so the skiers and snowboarders would have full bellies and plenty of energy until lunch-time. I never really gave a lot of thought to being a “youth leader” since my scouting days, but Angela and I have both been asked to help out with that some through our church. Honestly, it’s a no-brainer for me: I really enjoyed getting to hang out with these kids. I have my reservations in thinking that parenting will always be as fun (I hear that can be real work, huh, Mom & Dad?). However, after having gone rock climbing and now skiing with some of the youth at our church, I’m looking forward to the next adventure I get to tag along with.
A great deal of our involvement in this has been due to the encouragement and lead of our church’s new associate pastor, Chris Thomas. He and his wife Stephanie (and their two cute little girls) have been a wonderful addition to our church and we’re happy to call them our friends. Of course, my family grew up with a family minister who was more like a cool uncle than most folks probably see their church leader, so it’s not really so odd to me. However, I suppose a lot of folks might see it differently given their mental image of who or what a pastor is. Well, Chris is a thirty-something hipster from California by way of Boston who happens to be a thoughtful man of God (and a heck of a snowboarder, too). Having him and his family in our lives has been great for so many reasons and it’s a blast to get to hang out with them. So much so, I feel guilty when people actually feel the need to thank me for going on trips with their teenage kids.
Anyway, all of this just added to why it was so bizarre and unfortunate that on his last run of the day Saturday, Chris landed a jump badly and injured himself. At first, he seemed pretty sure that he had damaged the same knee he had hurt a few years earlier during another snowboarding accident. Now, it appears more likely he actually just broke his lower leg near his knee. I suppose that’s better, in a sense, as it is more likely to heal without surgery or further complications (in my limited knowledge of leg injuries, anyway). I felt bad that this happened on a trip he was in charge of and I hope he is able to heal quickly so he can get back to work. I also want him to get well soon so we can go out on more fun trips!
Also, after we got back home and I was getting over being sore all over from a day full of skiing (I’m not very good, but I enjoy it) we got a surprise call from Kevin on Sunday afternoon. He was in town, no less, and was wanting to meet up with us for dinner.
Angela and I met Kevin over at the home of Richmond’s newest addition, and also some people we’re very glad live here now, Trey and Megan. Kevin was interested in getting some Vietnamese food and Angela had a good suggestion. Vietnamese isn’t particularly our favorite, but we were up for it all the same and how could we deny someone who longed for it so? Dinner at Mekong was good and we followed it up with desert at the newly renovated Bev’s Ice Cream in Carytown. Afterwards, we hung out at Trey and Megan’s place laughing and enjoying some port and cheese. The port was fairly new to me, as I’d only had it once or twice before, but the blue cheese and Gouda was crazy good. It was also great fun to get to spend time cutting up with good friends.
Kevin tells me he took this photo on his camera phone right after calling me about dinner. I like to think they’re all so happy because I said we’d go. Photo by Kevin O’Mara, used under a CC 2.0 license.
And speaking of coming to Virginia, my brother Dave is on his way as I write this for a show tonight in Ashland with The Coal Men and Stephen Simmons. I always enjoy when they come up to play and the it seems many others are as well, as more and more people show up each time the come. Angela and I are looking forward to enjoying a good dinner and show up there this evening. The house is in a wrecked state, so we’ll probably have to take them out for breakfast (instead of Angela’s always well-received breakfasts), but it’ll be a lot of fun to get to see them all.
With all these people coming to Richmond and such good friends to spend time with, I’m not sure I’ll ever get around to working on the stuff that needs to get done at the house!