Christmas 2011 East Java, Indonesia Awakened before dawn by the call to prayer, I rise out of bed, dress in the dark and tip-toe up the winding stairway to my rooftop balcony. My city rests in her cradle between three massive volcanoes. After awhile, the sound of the mosques’ chanting retreats back into silence, allowing …
By Paul Richardson
To me, wine tastes about as delicious as gasoline. Yet, having been a waiter for six years, I understand the wine drinking ethos. Most folks who order a glass of wine with dinner are simply casual wine drinkers. Their motivation is to impress their dinner companions, and they really don’t have a clue as to whether they are drinking something exquisite or worthless.
Some rare people, though, don’t just casually drink wine. They are actual connoisseurs. Now, I must point out that you should not be allowed to say the word connoisseur unless you can pronounce it with a French accent, which counts me out. Wine snobs … I mean, connoisseurs, don’t just put wine in their mouths and guzzle it down like a dog standing over its dish. For wine connoisseurs, drinking wine is really more of an experience.
Skipping stones is sort of like this.
IN JUNE 1944, WHILE WAITING TO BE EXECUTED in a Nazi prison cell, Dietrich Bonheoffer wrote some of the most soul searching poetry I’ve encountered. The marching boots of certain death approached with each tick of the clock. In this condition of unimaginable anxiety, his words plunged with unmasked veracity into the freedom of truth. In one poem called Who Am I? he wrote the following lines: