Scotland (3/3)

The word hospitality in Greek is composed by the words “Philao” (brotherly love) and “Xenos” (stranger, immigrant and even enemy). In Latin, hospitality shares the same root with hospital meaning “guest chamber”; a shelter for the needy. In both instances, acts of service and assistance are involved; anticipating and taking care of someone’s needs. It is hard work that requires thinking, planning, preparing and paying the cost. Once in a while it might be inconvenient and invariably it’s time consuming.

My hosts, Christoph and Christine Ewers, are originally from Germany, but have made Scotland their home. They own and run The Ardshealach smokehouse. Their family business brought memories when my parents had a small bakery shop in Mexico. I learned many things about baking and management, but above all, to pray for customers. We work diligently according to God-given skills and then we depend on Him to bring people to buy our products. Their small enterprise is in my prayers. Anyone traveling in the area should stop by this private, small factory to get excellent customer service by the very same owners.

The Ewers ministered to my heart in a great impacting way. They opened their home to me, sharing what they have: time, food, friendship, acceptance, comfort. They arranged with other people (Lighthouse Church), as nice, loving and kind as they are, to attend me and give me each day a different sightseeing tour of the extraordinary Highlands.

To say “Scottish people are friendly” is an understatement for much more could be said. There must be exceptions; I understand that, but my experience was all positive. Chilly weather in the summer, rain almost every day, however warmth brotherhood every single moment.

Sometimes you hear a good sermon preached from the pulpit in church; some other unique and exceptional times you see a sermon lived. These people preached powerfully to me with their hospitality. Thank you.

 

Scotland (2/3)

Food is more than just what maintains us alive and strong. It is an important part of culture and identity; that which makes a country unique.  Haggis

First thing is my list to try was the national dish of Scotland: Haggis. I was hesitant about tasting it because I had read of the ingredients(sheep’s heart, liver, lungs), but I reason that if I go for liver pate with no problem; I possibly like this as well. I must confess that I cheated the first time. I was in The Grog and Gruel Pub (courtesy of Alan and Tricia Smillie) and saw in their menu “Nacho Haggis, Tex-Mex meets Scotland”. It was the ideal introduction, combining flavors I knew, with something new. The second time was at my friends’ house and they have made it. The picture says it all, it was as good as it looks.

SandwichThey also accustom “Toasties” for lunch. I have always loved sandwiches, especially if the bread is grilled, warm and crispy and the cheese melted. Simple and heavenly meal. Another lunch time I had lentil soup which is very filling, comforting and perfect for a cold rainy day, typical of Scotland… soup and weather, that is.

Scottish fish soupEven though I grew up in a port city; I was/am, to some degree, a picky seafood eater and it is not in my first-choice of edible material; adding to the fact that most of the time it is an expensive delicacy. My hosts were extremely kind offering me a farewell dinner consisting of Cullen Skink soup with smoked haddock. The main course were fresh Langoustines with a garlic-mayo dip. Given the opportunity, I would have this great delicacy again.

Scottish friend

A fully Scottish experience has to include the tasting of Whisky, so I was taken to the Ardnamurchan Distillery to have a tour of the facility where the process, from beginning to end, takes place. The visit ends in a nice, cozy room where you are given one (or more if you so decide) Glencairn tasting glass of their fine “water of life”.

And last, but not least: Shortbread! I used to bake it when I worked in the kitchen in College, decades ago. I had forgotten about it; now “I have relapsed” and have no plans to recover 😀

Published in: on August 1, 2019 at 5:01 am  Leave a Comment  
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Glass Beach

images“In the early 1900s, Fort Bragg, California, image039
residents threw their household garbage
over the cliffs above what is now Glass Beach.
It is hard to imagine this happening today,
But back then people dumped all kinds
of refuse straight into the ocean,
including old cars, and their household garbage,
which of course included lots of glass.

Beginning in 1949, the area around Glass Beach became a public dump, and locals referred to it as The Dumps.
Sometimes fires were lit to reduce the size of the trash pile (up to 30 feet high). However in 1967, the city leaders closed the area. Various cleanup programs were undertaken through the years to try to correct the damage, but without success.

Over the next 30 years the pounding waves cleaned the beach, by breaking down everything but glass and pottery. The pounding waves washed the trash up and down, back and forth. Tons of polished, broken glass were created by the pounding surf. These smoothed, coloured glass particles then settled along the sea shore in millions, and so a magnificent beach was formed.
The name was changed from, The Dump to what we currently know as, The Glass Beach. The sea glass that was created is the product of a very long and interesting process. It can take anywhere from 10 to 30 years to make sea glass, the name for any piece of glass that finds its way to the ocean and tumbles around in the water long enough to frost and smooth its surface.
Once it makes its way into the ocean, the glass is broken up into shards and is tumbled around in the water, where sand and other rocks act like sandpaper to smooth out its rough edges.
In 1998, the private owner of the property determined that Glass Beach should belong to the public and in 2002 it became part of MacKerricher State Park, open to the public. Within a period of a few years the Glass Beach won fame, attracting a large number of tourists every year.
Way back in time, people wanted to dump their glass products on this shore; now they would try to get one of these pieces to take home as a souvenir. It is ironic but true that where once it was illegal to dispose the glass on the shore, it now is a crime to remove it. Visiting the Glass Beach today is a unique experience. What makes it even more remarkable, are the sounds produced by the glass pebbles as they are being washed away by the gentle waves. (From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia).

glass beach
It’s hard to believe the short-sighted mistakes we were making that could have potentially ruined this beautiful spot. But thanks to natural processes, the ocean transformed the trash into the sea glass.

 I read this article about GLASS BEACH and realized that the spiritual beauty that I would like to see in myself TAKES TIME (Phil. 1:6) but I am very encouraged to know God can accomplish it.

God wants our lives to be beautiful, because God is glorified by beautiful things. But this beauty is not something that comes automatically; it is the result of the difficult process of living.”God has made everything beautiful in his time.” Let us wait on the Lord and let Him work out His plan; one day we will see the beauty of it all.

Published in: on July 24, 2014 at 6:11 am  Comments (1)  
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