Yep, a whole action-packed non-stop 9 days in the USA ~ and we never stopped for a single moment ~ well, only to take a few (zillion) photos!
Off we went, 6 of us from St. James’ Church and Preschool, Taichung to visit our sister school, Cambridge-Ellis Preschool in Boston for a few days. The first time some of our group had ever been there, and the first time any of us had met their lovely new principal, Gerlinde ~ what a great time we had! Such gracious warm hospitality from everybody we met, and definitely a strengthening of our partnership for the future.
But first a few days in Dallas, Texas to meet up with our St. James’ Church Rector Emeritus Rev. Charles C. T. Chen and his wife, MaryJo, who were staying with their daughter and her family. Great hospitality! But nobody we met in Dallas managed to think of anything worth seeing in their city (true, honest), so perhaps it was good that it was a weekend! We started on our first night with a performance of Silent Night Opera on the final night of the Fort Worth Music Festival – very powerful indeed…. Then to church on Mother’s Day at the local Christ Church, Plano just down the road – quite something I can tell you ~ everything in Texas is big big big, including churches!
And what did we do the rest of the time? Well a little bit o’ shopping, eating and well, that was about it! But what did we love about Dallas, apart from the people? Well, the weather of course, hot and sunny with only the odd thunderstorm and not much humidity, and even better, no mosquitoes YEAH!
And so onto Boston for 3 nights, where we were wined and dined and welcomed like real royalty! Special thanks to Gerlinde and Katie who took us everywhere, the first day sightseeing, including the Boston Duck Tour, and the second day at CES school in Cambridge, and in nearby Harvard University and Square….
Wonderful meals with the school staff, with former CES principal and our good friend Jenifer and her family, and the final evening was the CES annual meeting and night walk around Harvard… oh yes and not forgetting the great lobster lunch!
I also got to spend one afternoon with great friends, Lyn Hovey and his wife Naticksqw ~ he designed and made the stained glass here at Advent Church, Taiwan ~ we went to All Saints Church, Dorchester where Lyn and his team are restoring all the glass – he had me up there on the scaffolding checking it all out! Ah well, anything for dear Lyn and Naticksqw!
Needless to say, we all love, just LOVE Boston ~ what a great and beautiful city!
And the final weekend was spent in New York. Never ever will we forget this past weekend, largely thanks to the kindness of Bishop Lai’s sons, Paul and Andrew. Friday afternoon we were picked up by Andrew and off we went in the rain to visit 815 ~ the Episcopal Church Center. Not having made any arrangements, we never expected to meet anyone, but somehow, our good friend Canon Peter Ng appeared out of the elevator just as were in the main lobby and so it was that we also met Angie, who had been in Taiwan for the EAM conference a few years ago, and Lori who was only here in Taiwan the week before last!
And then to St. John’s Cathedral, New York where there was a rehearsal going on for the consecration on Saturday of the new bishop suffragan ~ we watched awhile and went on our way…. can’t stop even a moment, so much to see and do in New York! And so to the Art Museum, then Macy’s, and finally to a delicious Korea BBQ meal in Korea Town with Paul and Andrew…
And so to our final day, Saturday, and a whirlwind tour of New York in bright sun with blue skies! Incredible, truly incredible! All the famous places, and all in one day ~ starting with breakfast in China Town…
And when we’d done all that by mid-afternoon, off to Newport in New Jersey to see Andrew in his home, meet his family, and to see the views across the river of New York…
And finally Saturday night to Times Square!
And so to Sunday, departure day ~ and off I went very early by the New York subway to check out Central Park – what a beautiful place. So much space and so much greenery ~ and bluebells in bloom ~ amazing ~ the first time I’ve seen bluebells for many many years, possibly well over a decade!
And so back to Taiwan yesterday from New York via Tokyo – with only one regret, no time to see all my friends in the USA, but for that I’d need months, not days!
Thanking God for safe travels, great friends, wonderful company, good weather, warm welcomes, amazing hospitality… and of course no mosquitoes – who were all waiting for me on arrival back in Taiwan last night ha ha!