Wednesday, April 29, 2009

3 Rooms and a View

When Doug and I got married, we moved into a beautiful duplex; two bedrooms, a large kitchen/dining room, and a nice-sized living room, all on a spacious half-acre plot of land and all for $800 per month. We filled our side of the two-car garage with all kinds of stuff: camping gear, spare mattresses, two extra coffee tables, old dorm room posters of Ireland.

Doug accepted a job at JMU in Harrisonburg, VA and the purging began. We made $400 in a yard sale, and moved into a significantly smaller apartment near the University. A few months later, we cleared even more space for the arrival of our little Abe. And four months after that, we packed our entire household into 8 suitcases and boarded a plane for Zurich, Switzerland.

Our first apartment in Zurich offered barely enough room for those 8 suitcases; only two rooms and a tiny kitchen for us and the baby. Even the fridge was small, about the size for a college dorm room. Two months in those cramped living conditions, and we felt we hit the open prairie when we moved into our current flat: three rooms, a functional kitchen, and one spectacular view.

From our windows, we see everything from Old Town Zurich in the south to the northern border with Germany. On a clear day, we can even eye the snowcapped Alps. We see the sun shine over the city and the rain fall on the rooftops. We gaze at the sunset and watch the city lights light up the valley like a Christmas tree.

We may have a kitchen table in the middle of our living room, and my dresser may be so close to the bed that I must stand to the side to open its drawers, but we look out to a big horizon, a spacious sky, and a big city into which we are called.

The story of our living space is the story of our journey: clear the clutter and enjoy the view.

Here I'll try to give you a glimpse of what I see from these 3 rooms: adventures abroad, revelations in parenting and living in a foreign land, thoughts about God, and whatever else may catch my eye.

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