A professor from home (David) is teaching an online Bible class to some of the students on our program, and he joined us for a while in Turkey, as many of the activities and tours related to his course. When he met us in Istanbul, he brought a green and blue gift bag to our room. His wife is one of the most thoughtful people I have ever met, and even though she wasn’t able to accompany him to Turkey, she thought ahead about what we might be missing from home. Inside the bag were a full-size bag of Doritos, 2 theater-size boxes of Hot Tamales (for me!), a whole bag of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups (for Derek), a new magazine, and salsa.*
You’ll have to trust me, though, because all that’s left is the gift bag and a little bit of salsa. If Hot Tamales are within 20 feet of me, they WILL disappear, so those things didn’t have a chance. (One year in Cincinnati, I even gave up Hot Tamales (not even candy in general- just HT) for Lent because I’d gotten into the habit of walking to Walgreens every day on my lunch break to buy a big box. Yes, every day.) And the Reese’s were gone just as quickly, not even making it back to Germany with us!
Before we left Abilene, we had lunch with David and Cynthia, and David mentioned something about the verse in the Bible that says, “love keeps no record of wrongs” and then went on to say that it should also say, “love keeps no record of rights.” He explained that we shouldn’t constantly keep track of whose turn it is to invite whom to dinner the next time, or who owes what to whom, because with real love, it doesn’t really matter. I really liked the sentiment, and David and Cynthia model that kind of friendship, which is incredible to see.
We enjoyed the treats from the States immensely, so thank you, Cynthia and David. You’re the best.
*Also: maybe 20 min. after opening our gifts and setting them aside, David, Derek, and I were chatting in our hotel room when the students stopped in to talk to us about something. Immediately their eyes honed in on the goodies from the States. “Are those Reeses’?” they asked, and “Where’d you find the Doritos?” We tried as cooly as possible to change the subject, and thankfully David and Cynthia had also sent a bag of candy specifically for them, so they stopped ogling our stash. Whew. Close call.