A few of you (from the comments of my last post) asked to see what French cursive looks like. This is the best example I've found:
Do you see how many of the capitals are different? Do you notice how it's not at all slanted like its American counterpart? Just confusing enough to throw me for a loop when I got back to the States.
In any case, going to school wasn't the only thing I did in France. There were many vacations. And since Europe is a pretty small area and since my parents worked from home, they took us on a lot of road trips in the summer.
We explored lots of different regions of France, Spain, Portugal, Switzerland, England, and Germany. These trips would have been very expensive coming from California. But for us, it was just a day's drive, and we would often find other missionary families to stay with.
Somewhere in France - I'm on the far left!
I did not appreciate how special this was until I became an adult. I just remember whining in the back of the car ("Are we THERE yet??"). I sadly don't even remember most of these amazing trips.
I went to Barcelona when I was nine, and do you know what I remember from the entire week we were there? We found donuts. Donuts as we know them in America do not exist in Europe, so this discovery was a BIG DEAL. The culture? The sights? The architecture? It must not have made a big enough impression because I will forever equate Barcelona with DONUTS.
When my parents moved to France, they had NO IDEA of the difficulties that were ahead. They also had NO IDEA of the blessings ahead either. Our lives were made richer because they obeyed God's calling. I clearly remember hearing my dad say on one such trip: "I can't believe I'm skiing in the Alps right now!!"
It's difficult to talk to people about this aspect of our missionary lives. I worry people will think it was just one big vacation over there. It wasn't. It was hard, discouraging work to bring the gospel to a nation of people who were convinced they didn't need it.
But the blessings...... oh, the blessings!