Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Learning to Live in England, Part 10

Tuesday, 15 June

Tuesdays are developing into a certain routine for me: Library in the morning to do some blogging, lunch in the hand downtown, knitting group in the afternoon (where today I met two new people, Rita and Jane, both in my age group), a stop by the supermarket on my way home, while Demetrios stays home and works on his book. Then, in the evening, we go together to Stuart's house in our neighborhood for the Anglican discussion group. We brought the treats this time, shortbread bars topped with layers of caramel and chocolate.

We discussed the Gospel lesson about the woman who anointed Jesus' feet, and we talked about how important it is to be aware of our own need for forgiveness.

Naturally (I use that word advisedly), it came across as the need to go around feeling guilty, whipping ourselves emotionally. How morbid. We tried to explain that the kind of self-awareness of which we were speaking wasn't about guilt! It's predicated upon the prior awareness of God's fathomless Love, of His unwavering, constant, infinite tender kindness toward us. It isn't about kicking ourselves.  It's not about awareness of guilt so much as awareness of how broken and dysfunctional we are.  (Yes, we are; and if we don't believe it, we have only to look the Perfect Man, Jesus, to see the gaps between Him and us.)  It's about growth in true humanness and into divinity, because you can't correct the distortions within until you become aware of them, can't be liberated from a chain you don't realize you've wrapped around yourself, can't heal the disease until it's diagnosed.  (And no, I am not denying it's GOD Who does all this in us, but He most certainly doesn't do it without our effort, and if He did, while we remained passive puppets, that wouldn't resemble anything the Orthodox consider salvation.) So the discussion turned to a meditation upon God's astonishing, miraculous, unbridled Love, and it seems to me we all went home rejoicing.

Thursday, 17 June

We've spent a quiet couple of days at home,and enjoying every minute of it. Our big achievement was yesterday, when we put up the larger of our two new bathroom cabinets. All by ourselves. Now our toiletries have a place to live. Anastasia's Law: Everything takes longer than you think it will. Corollary: Everything is harder than you think it will be. It isn't perfect, for sure, but it looks okay and we're more or less pleased. It's LEVEL, anyway. We used the new bottle of Listerine for our level!

We also spent some evening time exploring English television.  It's overall considerably better than American (or Greek, which is even worse).  We've enjoyed some detective shows, such as re-runs of the 'Poirot' series with David Suchet, and Inspector Frost. , and 'Springwatch,' a nature show that has webcams in birds' nests and foxes dens and such, and tracks specific animals.  There are also rip-offs of American shows.  There's an English version of 'American Idol,' and 'Big Brother'.  'Desperate Housewives' is also on.  And of course the World Cup matches are on.  England hasn't been doing very well.


Sarah in Indiana said...

I think actually in some cases the American shows were rip-offs of the British ones, rather than vice versa.
I'm really enjoying reading about your life in Liverpool.

Anastasia Theodoridis said...

Hi, Sarah!

You're probably right; I wouldn't know for sure.

Thanks for your kind comments. (We're actually in a small town called Ormskirk, but Liverpool is the nearest city to us.)

Bb said...

Yes, Pop Idol did indeed come before Americal Idol. I believe there's also now an Australian Idol that follows the same format. Who says the empire is dead? :-D

If you ever watched Sanford and Son, take the time to savour Steptoe and Son now that you're in the UK. It's a British classic and certainly part of the inculturation experience. :-)