i’m in aukland, new zealand, as i write this, on my way home. i flew in this morning from sydney, and am spending the afternoon with my good friend tash mcgill, before flying overnight tonite to l.a., and on to san diego.
my last day in sydney was reasonably uneventful, and really post-world youth day. i wrapped up my 24 hours of silence, got picked up by an a buddy who i know from hong kong, who now lives here. he drove me out to where i had an appt in the ‘burbs, and we had a leisurely coffee together and talked about the church in australia.
then, as i blogged in my post about the small world, i met with the owner of our largest ys product distributor in australia. i assumed i would chat with him about increasing the number of ys titles they sell, and stuff like that. but before we met, i’d checked out the youth ministry section in the large anchor store below their offices, and was blown away. it was about the best youth ministry section i have ever seen in a christian bookstore. three entire shelving units, plus part of a fourth, fully stocked with multiple copies of loads of ys books. 90% of the titles were ys books.
so, there didn’t seem to be much of a reason to talk to him about increasing our ys titles. instead, we talked about adding some ys/koorong co-sponsored one-day youth ministry training events. they’re excited about this idea, and i think we’ll do it next year.
after lunch, i took the train back to sydney; and in the evening, had a wonderful dinner with the 24 year-old president of world youth alliance. it’s an org based in nyc that works to educate and rally young voices around ‘dignity of human life’ issues. they work directly with the u.n, the e.u., and other political groups, and have offices in 5 regions of the world. all their staff are under 30. sounds like they do really cool stuff, and there might be some complimentary stuff with ys. oh, and we ate a wagamama, which is one of my favorite restaurants in the world. liesl and i stumbled across wagamama in london a couple years ago. subsequent to that, i’ve had a couple friends become fans. i think there are only a couple in the states, but they’re in the east (boston, i think?). best noodle bar ev-ar.
later, i saw the dark night, in a kick-butt aussie theater (big chairs, tables between them, a bar that serves in the theater, giant screen and awesome sound). and, now, here i am going home.
a few final pics, completely random…
here are two of me on the sydney harbor bridge (one, extremely dorky, i might add!):
and, here is a big freaky bird i saw walking around a park in the city, which i took a picture of for my bird-loving friend, scot mcknight:
and, finally, here’s me here in aukland, revisiting my love for the new zealand “latte bowl” (yes, that’s a coffee):