If I had any doubts about being in Pittsburgh for the year, my experience on Friday confirmed my desire to be here. Actually to be honest, I was starting to doubt it.
Maybe doubt isn't the right word, but I was certainly getting jealous of my housemates having this cool experience in a city they've never been to (aside from interviews), to be away from most of the people they know and start on this voyage into adulthood...while I'm just an hour from my parents, going to some places I've been before, and in general being kind of...safe. I was honestly feeling a bit bummed on Friday. Even though I totally believe in what my placement is doing, and how I have the chance to change Pittsburgh, I was beginning to wonder if I had even made the right decision.
Of course I did. God has me here for a reason! And that was confirmed again Friday night. We went to the Strip District to eat Primanti's, then over to Station Square to walk around and hop on the Gateway Clipper. I hadn't done that in about 8 years and it was great to see the city on the water, at night. Then we went up the Duquesne Incline and looked at the city...how breathtaking it is up there! Though I'd just done that in November of 2009, I really appreciated Pittsburgh all over again up there. It was like God's little way (or I guess a big way) of reminding me that I LOVE Pittsburgh and that He wants me here, at least until July 29, 2011.
Saturday was our first foray into grocery shopping. All 8 of us went...I don't think we'll do that again. Not that it went poorly, but we really don't all need to be there at once. But after Giant Eagle we went to the Holy Trinity Greek food festival...delicious, to say the least. Gyros and baklava? Yes, please. After the festival, one of my closest friends from college came to pick me up! Whitney and I went to her grandparents' house for a family birthday party, then came back to hang out at my place. It was so wonderful to be in a new place, but hanging out with an old friend.
Sunday, we all went to Pittsburgh Mennonite Church as a house, because PULSE is a Mennonite-affiliated program. The church was beautiful and the service was fine, but...that's just it. For me, it was fine. It wasn't what I'm used to--not that church should make us complacent or keep us in a rut, but I just didn't feel "right" there. They were welcoming, wonderful people and I had a fine time, but I don't think it's the church for me.
In the evening, we all tried out Open Door at the Union Project. This service was more "my speed"--I don't know if I'll go there every week, but I'd like to try it again. It was more comfortable. Not in a complacent way, but in an "oh, THIS is how I connect with God" way. So we'll see what comes next, as far as church is concerned. I can't try every church in the area...but I can try a few more.
Monday was quite relaxing...I really just baked cookies and hung out because TOMORROW the real world begins. As we were driving to church on Sunday Chris pointed out a cafe that is usually quite busy on Saturdays & Sundays. I realized at that moment that Saturdays and Sundays are now my ONLY chance to do anything like that, because I'm now a grown-up. I don't think I can handle this!
Please pray for my first day, my first week, and for my housemates' experiences as well. We're all a bit nervous--but my housemates told me today at dinner that they'd be super nervous if they were me. Eeek!
Just as I was typing this post, "Great is Thy Faithfulness" came up on iTunes. What a great reminder...God is faithful and He will be through this whole year with PULSE. :)