Monday, October 30, 2006
Sex, marriage and the restHere are the two comments that I've now put on John Smulo's blog. I don't pretend that they represent systematic theology, but were in response to a request for comments - please see the original post and comments for some context.
Comment 1Well, I'm going to say it: "I'm not sure that the sex is always wrong outside a married relationship."
In fact, "I'm not even sure that that sex is always wrong outside a long-term committed relationship."
This is something that we're bad at as Christians, partly because we have a model for relationships, and that's marriage. It's an ideal, and not everyone can live with it. And, of course, it's rather difficult to apply to gays and lesbians.
But is restraint always right? It can damage, and lead to sin. Sexuality is part of us, and part of being human. Not sure I'm going to say more than this, at least for now, but I'm happy to discuss in more detail if it would be helpful. I know it's going to upset some people, but if it liberates some people too, then good. And by "liberate", I mean "set free in Christ".
One guiding principle? "God is Love". Think hard about that, and don't trivialise it: it's a responsibility, not an excuse for promiscuity.
Comment 2Let's step away from the second of my statements for a moment, and look only at the first. If we take the proposition: "Sex is not always wrong outside a married relationship", and assume that we _are_ talking about long-term committed relationships.
I'm not going to try to prove this point (partly because I struggle here, too: my "I'm not sure" was heartfelt), but only to come up with some points of view which may or may not be valid for some or all people.
I'm going to start with a reductio ad absurdum argument. I know this is dangerous, but I want us to be aware of what we're saying. So, the first question is: what do we mean by marriage? Do we mean a Christian marriage? If not, there are ramifications for all those who are not Christians who, just by having sex (making love), are sinning. Of course we can say that people who aren't Christians have a broken relationship with God, but does every action they take become automatically sinful therefore? I don't think I can accept that - in fact, I think it's dangerous theologically.
So, what about non-religious marriages? I think the same goes. So, let's say we're now accepting civil weddings. How does the acceptance of the state of a relationship stop sex within that relationship being sinful?
And then, what about those who, for whatever reason, find themselves unable to sign up for such a state ceremony? If we (as Christians) are questioning the validity of a state ceremony (a tacit question above), then who are we to tell such people to marry? If they're happy to make a long-term commitment to each other (I personally believe that the question of whether they make this a public commitment is actually very important), then how do we define that as different to a state ceremony, for instance?
So, that's one argument. My next one won't work for many, but it's really a core one for me. Again, it's "what do we mean by marriage?" but from a different angle. I believe that homosexual sexual activity is not necessarily sinful. That's to say a similar thing to "I believe that heterosexual sexual activity is not necessarily sinful." Pretty much exactly the same thing, in fact. Except for one core point: if we say that sex outside marriage is always sinful, then there is no sort of relationship for homosexuals (or bisexuals engaging in homosexual sex) in which sex can be anything other than sinful. I just don't believe this to be true. I struggle with enlarging our definition of marriage to include homosexual relationships, but I do wonder whether that is the most honest (and therefore Godly) thing to consider.
Another point: if marriages are not only about child-bearing (and I don't think that many people would defend this view these days), then the place of love and non-procreational sex - call it recreational or relationship-affirming sex if you prefer - is safe within our concept of marriage. Marriages are about lots more than sex - friendship, support, prayer and non-sexual love, for starters.
Sex before marriage used to be expected within mediaeval and early modern societies - if the woman didn't get pregnant, then marriage wasn't necessarily on the cards. If she did, then all well and good, and the Church would bless the union: there would be a wedding service. This, with the last point, tells us that the concept of marriage has changed over the centuries. And that's before we even start on feminist attacks on the historical institution of marriage as a patriarchal power structure (some of which I believe have a lot of merit).
Before I finish, I'd like to point out that I'm not against marriage. Absolutely not: I'm strongly for it. I believe that marriage is a sacrament, and is the strongest affirmation of my faith in God that I have (despite the fact, I'd point out, that my wife is not a believer). It is an ideal, and not one to which everyone feels able to aspire. It is also (like all human reflections of God's will here on earth) a difficult, fractured, often broken institution which requires work.
Making sex the "big question" isn't always healthy. I think we have other things to worry about. Not to say that we shouldn't talk about it, though.
I'm also aware that the initial question, as posed, wasn't just about sex, but also about sexuality and singleness. I've not addressed this question. But I've written more than I'd intended to, and had better stop here.
Sunday, October 29, 2006
Car and swimmingJo was up around 0530 - felt like 0630 to her, of course, as the clocks went back last night. Moo _very_ kindly took Jo downstairs and I got another 2 hours of sleep. My wife is an angel in human form (only sometimes, of course!). We got up, and then went to West's Renault in Cambridge to change Moo's car. It's got over 73,000 miles on the clock (see, another clock reference), she does lots of mileage on it, and it's depreciating soon. We need something newer that's not going to cost us more in servicing than it's worth, so we've bitten the bullet. And avoided divorce. Again.
Took Jo swimming in the afternoon, while Moo had a well-earned sleep. Chicken (organic, free-range, very happy indeed until someone slaughtered it and pull its guts out, that sort of thing) for supper, all of us round the table at the same time, which is a real treat.
Saturday, October 28, 2006
Stick insect(backposting) I half remember a game of charades years ago which led to someone putting their arms straight up in the air, going stiff and shouting "stick insect" was very funny. But I can't remember the context.
Got up this morning and Moo took Jo shopping while I did my expenses for the past couple of weeks. Lots to claim, as usual, and I managed to find nearly 300 quid that I'd missed on a previous one, which was a relief. Sorted out our general expenses, too. We then went out to meet Simon (hi, Simon!), one of Jo's godparents for lunch at the Bell in Castle Hedingham. Simon was still in his house, clearing out his stick insects. He started with one, and now has scores of the things. We headed off the pub, and he joined us later. And then Moo discovered a stick insect on his shirt, and we pretty much lost it. Why bring a stick insect to lunch at the pub? Why would you do that? So Simon put him in a tankard on the mantlepiece, and we collected him once we'd finished.
We then went to one of our regular haunts, Colchester Zoo. They had a Hallowe'en day on (do you see what I did with "haunt", there? Did you?), so there were lots of kids in costumes. We weren't, but had the usual lovely time.
Friday, October 27, 2006
NannyingMoo headed off to Ipswich around 0900, after Mel arrived at 0830. We'd been up a lot of the night with Jo: not quite sure why, but she was sleeping very badly. Mel had been quite ill yesterday - a nasty migraine (her first, it appears), and she said that she wasn't feeling great.
At 0945, Mel called up the stairs, and I came down. She was feeling awful, so of course I sent her home. Left me in charge of Jo all day, which was lovely, but didn't do much for my work plans. Of course, given that Jo was awake most of the night, she would, of course, sleep well during the day. Not a bit of it. 15 minutes first time, more like 10 second time. In fact, I did get some work done, and a good thing, too. Busy, of course, as one would be.
Went for a walk (saw a horse, some sheep and a tractor), made a card-type thing for Mel, went to the swings, slide and roundabout (a little lad called Dale nearly had an apoplectic fit when she went onto the swings), made some fairy cakes and the rest.
Moo got back at 1700, and took over, so I had a chance to do some more work, which was a relief. Jo's not been well either - she had a temperature by the time Moo came back - but she's gone down well tonight, and we're hopeful of a good night tonight.
Thursday, October 26, 2006
Wing Commander Walter Gibb(backposting) Walter Gibb was a great uncle of mine, of whom I was very fond. He died a couple of weeks ago, and I was more affected than I'd expected. He felt like my last link with Poppa (my maternal grandfather, and last remaining grandparent, who died several years ago - Major R. Peter D. Gibb). His (Walter's) obituary appeared in the Telegraph today. He was quite a guy - and there were quite a few things I didn't know about there. We'd talked quite a lot about his time in the war and also his career as a test pilot, but not about the altitude records, for instance. I last saw him at Jim and Nina's wedding, and we'd had a lovely talk the night before. Fascinating guy.
I spent a fair amount of time playing with a couple of demos of games that I got on a demo CD yesterday from Tux Games: Uplink and X2. Actually, I downloaded the former from their website after it was suggested to me at the show. X2 is very much like Elite - including the controls, and even the docking and cargo scoop. I can see myself buying it at some point.
Moo was late back from Birmingham, as expected, and I put Jo to bed. Took longer than expected, though she was tired: was up a couple of times, but was OK in the end.
Wednesday, October 25, 2006
GeekeryLinux World Expo. Managed not to buy anything. Aren't I good?
Need to spend some time talking about yesterday's post. By way of explanation, I wrote it standing up in Sandefjord (Oslo-Torp - only Oslo in the sense that it's about two hours from Oslo centre, whether you take the train-taxi combination or just go with the coach: I know, I've tried both) airport around 2100 local. Needs more thought, and I'm not sure that all of the comments by Philip on Sally's blog on my blog :-) are entirely fair. But then again, I didn't explain myself in great detail, and nor was I trying to be systematic. Maybe another time.
Tuesday, October 24, 2006
Rampant trinitarianismGary said:
- I see the doctrine of Trinity in itself almost an impulse to God's act of creation? If God were a truly monotheistic, single entity then where would God's motive be? God would be either so self-sufficient that creation wouldn't matter, or so needy for relationship as not to be truly God.
- It's the nature of Trinity that love is shared - and then shared again. That open-ness to sharing provides the dynamic for Creation - where the love between Father and Son is shared with the variety and multitude of creatures.
- ... agreeing with Gary here ( don't be so shocked Gary) but I also see the the open-ness to sharing as providing the dynamic for creation;
exisitng in the Spirit, moulded by the son and created by the Father- from God through God and in God (Moltmann)...this concept of trinitarian creation binds together the immanence and transcendence of God....
- The mystery is that this act of creation is ongoing and we are invited to participate-
- "We are all in him enclosed and he is enclosed in us."- Julian of Norwich
- The mystery is that this act of creation is ongoing and we are invited to participate-
I'm just not convinced. How do we _know_ all of this about the Trinity? It's becoming clearer to me than ever that a good part of my theology is apophatic, that is, I'm happier describing concepts of the Trinity (in this case) in terms of what it is not: in particular, enjoying the ineffability of the Trinity (this is the via negativa espoused, in particular, by Pseudo Dionysios, which says that God is _not_ effable, _not_ mortal, etc.). My concern about making statements about creation - and (see my upcoming essay) particularly about very human concepts such as mission - by saying "it's like this, which is something we don't understand", is pushing the boundaries of what we know. I'm happy to say that there are aspects of the Trinity which are, of course, echoed in the creation, because the creation was an act, an impulse, that proceeded from God (ooh, see that credal language, just see it there). But to say that God had to create because the Trinity is a creative partnership? Well yes, but only because we've defined creation as something that the Trinity does. It's a circular argument.
It's for similar reasons that I'm very happy to talk about the feminine nature of God. If there's one thing we can know about the naming "Father" it's surely that what God isn't constrained by the thing we think of as fatherhood: in fact, our concept of fatherhood is a shallow mockery of Fatherhood as it should be expressed, and we know from biblical witness and from personal experiences that God's relationship with us is also expressed in ways that we tend to think of as "motherly".
Interestingly, there's one point for me where we _can_ be kataphatic (make positive statements) about God: it's in saying that God is human. Because we know that in the person of Jesus Christ, he came and lived as a fully human being.
This is interesting stuff, and is giving me food for thought. As I mentioned above, I'm intending to write an essay which says that it's dangerous to say that mission should be shaped by Trinitarianism, simply, for me, because we shouldn't be shaping things against things we don't know.
A little more here. I take a very post-structuralist approach to binary oppositions: I don't like them. To say that y != x (y does not equal x) does not mean to say that we can say that x != y. For example, to say that something is not light is not to say that it is dark. Or to say that worship is not formal is not to say that it is informal. (To choose a germane example. *cough*)
To ground this in what I'm saying above: I believe that the three persons of the Trinity are not separate: but that doesn't mean that I know what it is for them to be as one. I just don't, and I can't, and that's great, because it's that creative gap, that unbeing at the centre of meaning, that allows things to happen. Deconstructionist thought is - largely - about breaking down these binary oppositions and allowing the creative meaning out, freeing it from x and !x (not x).
"The centre cannot hold : the centre cannot but hold".
Monday, October 23, 2006
Say hello! - #0I've just looked at the stats, and over the time that I've been writing this blog, then number of hits I get a day has increased. That's kind of good, obviously. But it's also a bit sad that I don't know who you are. So, I'm going to try to start an irregular feature: it's feedback time.
I'd very much like to hear from anyone who reads this blog. Regularly, irregularly, frequently, infrequently. Tell me what you like, what you don't like. More theology? Less travel updates? Who knows? I'd just like to hear. So speak up. And I'm including regulars like Fi (it's part of your godmotherly duty, obviously), Sally, Gary, Mark, Si, D. and the rest. Have your say. You can even do it anonymously if you like.
Oh, and for those of you who care:
- theology: reading about the relationship between trinitarianism (try saying that after a few, I know I have) and creation. Not convinced.
- travel: I'm in Oslo today, at the SAS Radisson Plaza. Look me up if you're in town.
Mini-update: just changed the title when I realised that I'd started counting from 1, rather than 0. How embarassing.
Sunday, October 22, 2006
GreenhouseMade it to the 8am communion today, which just opens the day out, as the standard service at Great Yeldham is 11am. Cleaned out a huge - and I mean huge - mass of passion flower. Now there's enough space for Jo to play in it. Had Victoria and Sennon over to play in the afternoon, which is fun. Victoria's great, and Jo and Sennon play pretty well together.
Saturday, October 21, 2006
CarsDepressing. Moo and I went round a couple of garages today to see whether we want to replace Moo's car, now that we've got another baby coming and as the mileage is really racking up on her current one. All very depressing, and it brought up the question of the dog again. In response to a comment on this topic by Sally last time, I really don't think that I'm in the wrong (I know that's not quite what you said). We're finding a way to a compromise, anyhow.
Before we went, we had our first visit from a midwife. She (Felicity) was standing in for someone who's ill (Debbie, who was our midwife for Jo, and who we hope to have again), but was very nice and helpful. Not much to discuss - just checking we're all OK and have some ideas about things like vaginal delivery or C-section (given that Moo had the latter last time), which hospital (probably Colchester), and stuff like that. All seems well.
Friday, October 20, 2006
Supervision and training agreementJust looked at one of yesterday's posts: not often you get to use the word "churchpersonship", which is a pity.
Moo had Jo "help" her make some flapjacks today, which I'm all in favour of. Had a bit of a sulk when they were done, though, as Moo had put apricots in them. I don't like apricots, and if you're going to make something with the bubba, why not make something we can all enjoy? :-(
Had a supervision today with Keith. Had to put together my training agreement for the year. Can't see anything wrong with posting the main section, so here it is in draft:
Learning Outcome 1: To develop a fluent and consistent voice in preachingMethods:
- Preach in front of various congregations
- Encourage feedback from other preachers and congregations (including use of forms)
- Read Richard Hooker’s sermons
- Read other sermons over past 2000 years
- Listen to other students and invite to my sermons.
Assessment: Being able to discuss and respond to criticism and comments and to apply to sermons and their preparation.
Learning Outcome 2: To use insights gained from the full range of activities on the course in daily life and discipleshipMethods:
- Reflect with supervisor and tutor
- Use blog for reflection
- Find "still time" to enable and enhance reflection
- Discussion with friends and family
- Engagement in wider interactions where they present themselves
Assessment: A committed blog with responses to questions from readers; honest and frank discussion with Christians and non-Christians.
Learning Outcome 3: Seek and maintain own support networkMethods:
- Use supervisor when required
- Don't be afraid to call on family and friends for help
- Use ERMC Group and peers
- Accept prayers from churches in the benefice
- Discussions with spiritual director
Assessment: Being able to cope with the pressures, whilst managing to keep ample time for family and self and maintaining balance between family life, work and study.
Learning Outcome 4: Explore the place of music in my private and corporate devotionMethods:
- Use music in private prayer and devotion
- Participate in various forms of music-making within the ERMC course context
- Go to services at King's from time to time
- Listen to more devotional music in day-to-day life (travelling, working, driving, etc.)
Assessment: create and present to various course and non-course people a piece of work examining this learning outcome.
Thursday, October 19, 2006
ChurchpersonshipThis is Gary's fault.
| You scored as Evangelical Holiness/Wesleyan. You are an evangelical in the Wesleyan tradition. You believe that God's grace enables you to choose to believe in him, even though you yourself are totally depraved. The gift of the Holy Spirit gives you assurance of your salvation, and he also enables you to live the life of obedience to which God has called us. You are influenced heavly by John Wesley and the Methodists.|
What's your theological worldview?
created with QuizFarm.com
Bit worried by the Methodist thing (obviously). The liberal balance seems OK. Neo-orthodox? You've got to be kidding me! _Very_ much liking the "Emergent/Postmodern", though.
Roman Catholic? *cough*
Marcion, Montanus and MikeCamelWhile I remember, I should have invited you to find me on SecondLife: I'm MikeCamel Albert. Albert? Well, you have to choose a second name, and there weren't that many options, and I thought "Einstein? Might as well."
Had an interesting tutorial this afternoon with Alan. It was a session on "Authority in the Church and the Church's nature". It was looking at the early church (post-Gnosticism) and how it dealt with Marcion (rejection of the Old Testament and the Creator God, accpetance only of later Luke and the non-Pastoral Pauline epistles) and Montanus (a very charismatic movement, focusing on the imminent Parousia (second coming) and prophecy, including female prophets). Generally, there were three instruments: creeds (e.g. One Holy Catholic Apostolic Church), Canon (the questions raised by Marcion pushed the settlement of the Canon) and Church Order (e.g. rise in power of the bishops).
Every move to control risks alienation, and loss of true revelation, and, in particular, the rejection of some of the more Enthusiastic (that is Pneumatological: inspired by the Holy Spirit) properties of the Marcionites has led to a continued suspicion of charismatic movements such as some of Pentecostalism by so-called "mainstream" Christian orthodoxy.
SecondLifeRather addictive. In fact, I often have it on in the background, just listening to the music that's streamed from various places, particularly when it's stuff that I wouldn't usually hear. One pretty odd thing is that you can dance along - and there are even ways to dance in concert with other people.
I'm rather disturbed by the fact that some of the avatars look really sexy. No, I mean it.
Wednesday, October 18, 2006
Shortness of post(backposting) I'm sorry for the shortness of post recently. Moo and I are pretty tired at the moment - Moo 'cos she's pregnant, me 'cos I'm travelling a lot and not sleeping very well even when I'm home. Today went to meet my old colleagues at Cryptomathic to talk about some business, which went very well. Moo was back late, and I ended up putting Jo to bed, which was lovely. I phoned Kate, Jen and Dad (different phonecalls!), and Jo had a great time chatting away to them. Her language is coming on again, and it's getting clearer and clearer what she's trying to say.
Tuesday, October 17, 2006
Symbian Smartphone ShowSymbian Smartphone Show today (and tomorrow, but I won't be going, as I did all I needed to do today). Alan Eustace (SVP Engineering and Research for Google) spoke very well _indeed_ on "Google in the Mobile World". I wandered around, spoke to some people - must check out Remotext, which I hope will sort my mobile calendar woes, and mobile GPS apps seeme to be coming of age. Home in time for Jo's supper and bedtime.
Monday, October 16, 2006
LondonWent to London today, and had a bunch of social/networking/technical meetingy stuff in the afternoon and evening. Managed to get two suppers (one buffet, the other sit-down), and lots of free booze. Not, I'm pleased, too much free booze, and even if there had been, the fact that my mini-cab driver took around 40 minutes from getting to the Excel conference centre to the hotel, which was less than 3 minutes' walk away. So I didn't get in till 0045 or so. And then had some work to do. Heigh-ho. Slept OK.
Sunday, October 15, 2006
Baptism"The Bursells can't organise a baptism in a church, and one of them's a priest (and another one's one in training)".
We arrived at around 0940 for a 1000 service. Then Jim got a call saying that Polly and Tamar (who'd turned up from the Dive Show at around midnight last night) were broken down outside Wedmore. What they were doing in Wedmore, none of us could fathom - it's not on the way to the church - unless they'd needed to pop to the shop before the service, but it was cutting it a bit close, particularly as Poll was due to be a godparent. Jo was asleep in our car with Moo, so Mum took off to find Polly. Just as the service was starting, Polly and Tamar turned up with Rosie (Tamar's mother, and my aunt). No Mum. It turned out that the message had been that _Rosie_ had broken down outside Wedmore, and Polly and Tamar had gone to fetch her.
Polly went to get Mum, which probably wasn't a great plan. I went out at the beginning of Dad's sermon to wake up Jo and to get Moo (as the baptism was due to start just afterwards). Got in halfway through the sermon. Mum had arrived. No Polly. I mentioned to Jim that someone would have to stand in for Polly if she didn't arrive, and he asked me to do it. I went up to the front with the other godparents to submit to Christ, renounce the devil, etc., and then we headed down to the font for the actual baptism. And Polly turned up, just in time.
It all went off in the end, and we went back to my parents' house. The salmon hadn't come from Bristol, but there was lots of other food. The red wine had gone in the fridge, and the white hadn't. Giles, who was in charge of getting the part-baked bread rools done, forgot them, but we rescued them in time. So, we managed.
Headed off around 1430, got home 1840. A lovely weekend.
Saturday, October 14, 2006
At my parents'We drove down to Somerset yesterday, and had a great evening yesterday and day today. Went to Clarks Village, and bought Jo some new shoes (trying to put them on her today caused shouts of "finish, finish!") and some new boots ("ooooo!"). Ate at the Sexey's Arms, and then went to the children's farm that Jo and I had visited with Poll and Lee last time I was down.
Jo _adores_ Dad, it's "grandpa, grandpa!" all the time. She likes Phoebe the dog, and Patch, too. And "granny", when she thinks of it. But mainly my father.
Friday, October 13, 2006
EssayI know it seems desparately early for a January deadline, but the weekends are getting booked up and soon the New Year will be upon us. I really, really need to start thinking about an essay. I believe that we're supposed to have enough information to get one of the Mission ones done, so I should think about that. I've _so_ lost track of what's due when, is the other problem. Aaaargh.
Thursday, October 12, 2006
Dog, or no dog?We had a difficult discussion today. We've been thinking hard about whether or not to get a dog to replace Suzie. Now that we know that there's only one baby on the way, it's at least possible. But there are all sorts of questions, including money, whether the cats just take to shitting in a litter box upstairs again (which Moo really can't empty when she's pregnant, and wants to avoid anyhow), transport (do we need a new car anyway?), care (what happens about walking it when I'm away).
I really want a dog. I really miss having one around, and I could really use the exercise. And I really miss having a dog around, I really do.
Wednesday, October 11, 2006
And homeLeft early, as something came up, so I didn't make it to the last session that I'd been hoping to get to, but that's the way it goes. But I got home early, which is brilliant. Jo's language is improving day by day. And now we have her out of nappies during the day. There are some accidents, but she's getting there: she knows what she's supposed to do.
Tuesday, October 10, 2006
Conference timeFreescale conference.
Monday, October 09, 2006
Day of the scanFirst had a supervision on the Jewish background to the early church, and then further onto issues of successionism. Very interesting.
Just the one. Very kicky, punchy, and sucking his/her thumb.
And then I went to Paris on the Eurostar.
Sunday, October 08, 2006
Brunch, then back homeThat pretty much does it. Lovely to be home, and Jo went down much easier than we expected. Looking forward to bed, after a West Wing episode to settle our supper.
Saturday, October 07, 2006
Farm, then Sissinghurst Gardens(backposting) We went to a lovely farm called Farmworld in Beckley. Clichéd name, but lots of fun. Lots of piglets, grooming horses, feeding goats, riding in a trailer behind a tractor, that sort of thing. Jo (and the others) loved it, as did the adults. We then headed off to Sissinghurst Gardens, which are stunning. Had lovely steak afterwards, brilliantly cooked by Jenny.
Friday, October 06, 2006
Mac turns 70(backposting) You'd never think that Jo's grandfather's now 70. He has such fun with the kids, and certainly doesn't act his age. We went out to a lovely restaurant, the Wild Mushroom. We ate very, very well, very reasonably, and they were great with the kids. It p*ssed it down while we ate, but cleared up afterwards, and we went to the beach later on. Windy, but dry, and just lovely.
Thursday, October 05, 2006
Rye Harbour - no(backposting) Rye's nice. Rye Harbour isn't. Unless you like chemical plants on the way, stuff like that. Parked up in Rye in the end, walked round it.
We can't remember what we did in the afternoon, but we had fish and chips in the afternoon.
Wednesday, October 04, 2006
A good meeting, and a drive to East Sussex(backposting) As the title says, we had a good meeting - in fact, a very good meeting - and I caught the plane back to LHR. Managed to remember to pick up the books I'd left on the plane on the way out, and rather enjoyed continuing reading Romanitas by Sophia McDougall. Interesting novel about what sort of a world and culture we'd live in if the Roman empire had never fallen.
Didn't leave Heathrow until past 2120, didn't get to East Sussex until 2245. Kate and Mac hired a cottage for a week, and the whole family turned up: I was the last to arrive, and Moo had got there with Jo on Tuesday afternoon. A lovely cottage, thatched, wood burning stove, that sort of thing. But boy, was I knackered when I got there. East Sussex is like North Carolina in that Sussex is in two parts (like Carolina) when you might not expect it to.
Tuesday, October 03, 2006
Stockholm(backposting) Drove to Heathrow, nice and early for a 1305 flight which wasn't actually till 1350. So _very_ early. Gave me time to have lunch, make some calls, etc., though. Sat next to a mother, father and their 16 month old girl, and had fun making faces, using basic sign language (which Emmy, the little girl, uses), and discussing parenthood. Meeting with colleagues in the evening, ready for one with a customer tomorrow.
Left my books (including an ERMC module text) on the plane. Hope to pick them up tomorrow.
Monday, October 02, 2006
Seminar on gnosticism(backposting) I think we must have been the most anodyne seminar group ever: poor Richard had a really hard time of it. I was quieter than usual, partly because I think it's good for me, and partly because I didn't have much to say. Sheila had had a nightmare, and not had a chance to do lots of the work she'd planned to, so two of the louder members were immediately crossed off the list. Given that we didn't finish till 2150, and I didn't get home till 2245 (thanks to Moo for a shorter route), I didn't get round to blogging until later.
Moo was lovely and cuddly in her sleep when I got home, which was very yummy.
Sunday, October 01, 2006
Can't think of a title. Too tiredPreached on Michaelmas, as promised. Didn't go very well, and I was rather annoyed with it all. Afterwards, a number of people came to tell me how good it had been. Don't you hate that? Including Dorothy, my supervisor's wife, who telephoned specially.
Did some gardening. Brought down a cast iron gutter. *rse.
My parents have had a lovely time with Jo, as has she.