It was a pretty good week, all things considered, though the ratio of people met to names retained was pretty pitiful. On Sunday the church we've been visiting here was finishing up what they call their yearly 'Conference.' It's sort of like a review of the past year combined with a business meeting and a worship service. A group of Samoans with ties to the church had driven all the way to NY from Tacoma, Washington with their worship/dance troupe. Before the service on Sunday I had a chance to meet the huge Samoan man that played keyboard for their group. His name was Fatu (Fatoo? Phattoo? Phat-2? . . . not sure. . .) and he works for a shipping company.
Now the Samoans are a big and beautiful people. Almost all of them were notably well-rounded. We had a chance to see why. On the Friday night before they'd held a Samoan pig roast- two whole pigs stuffed with chickens were cooked in pits over hot rocks. There were plenty of leftovers and everyone was invited to help finish off the food after the Sunday Service. I couldn't resist tasting a little Polynesian BBQ.
It was over lunch that we met Jessie and his wife Leann. Jessie is the worship leader and son of the Bishop (what they call the preacher there). He is to Fatu as a pencil is to a Coke can. It's been a long time since I've seen someone overflow with joy like Jessie when he's doing his job. We are looking forward to getting to know that couple better.
I also met an older guy- tall and thin with frizzy gray hair named Harry. He's lived in Alaska- you know that makes someone cool automatically. How many people can say they've actually lived in Alaska? Not many! I also met a sweet lady named Marja- I think. . . her name sounding something like a mix between Margie and Marsha and I couldn't quite pin it down.
Fast forward through a horribly busy work week. . . . On Saturday we pack up and leave for Rochester to join the rest of my team at the rugby tournament. It was there that I met a considerable number of people who's names I could have (and a few that I should have) retained, but nothing is coming back to me now. That's that for this week!