Dimitar at the Donmar

David and Amanda Kanor live in Covent Garden – one of most fun and culturally rich places in London. We are very lucky to be their friends. They invited us to the Donmar theatre to see a play called Dimitar last night.

I love theatres like the Donmar where you sit round three sides of the stage very close to the action. The energy is transfered so easily – as is the actors' spit!

The play was dark, but excellent. However the best part of the evening was dinner afterwards with David and Amanda. We ate at a swanky place, but half price (thanks to toptable.com). The Kanors have an infectious zeal for seeing a ministry in Central London. I am sure it is only a matter of time before it becomes a reality.

Ella’s baptism

One of the most moving events of our lives happened today. Ella Agerbak, the eldest child of our good friends the Agerbaks, was baptised after church.

Just about the whole church stayed behind to witness Rhoda’s tears, Andrew’s fatherly pride and Ella’s immersion. We are so proud of Ella and the whole family.

Here is some video of the events taken by Tim …

Remi’s baptism

The Parsnip Cultural Experience

We enjoyed dinner with our friends Mohan & Helen Nanjundan and their children Priya and Rahul last night. They have moved to London from Delhi to be on staff and serve the West sector of the church here.

We took dinner over to them – a roast duck with mashed spuds, greens grown in our garden, roast parsnip, apple, pear and blackberry crumble – so they could enjoy a thoroughly British culinary cultural experience! Most items were a hit, but I am not sure the parsnips convinced the kids. That's OK, it leaves more for the rest of us who, like myself, consider roast parsnip to be a heavenly vegetable sent to us from God to draw us His heart!

Spending time with Mohan and Helen is a joy. How lucky we are to have them here.

The Persian Barber

My normal barber Sean was off today, so his business partner filled his slot. What an interesting man. When I asked him where he waa from he described himself as "Persian". That led to a fascinating discussion about ancient history. He is passionate (and rightly so) about his heritage. He pulled out postcards of national treasures as well as a National Geographic magasine about Persia.

The next time I go for a haircut there he promised to show me a DVD about Persia while I am in the barber's chair. I loved his enthusiasm. One of the best things about living in London is that you can learn about the whole world without going there!

At the weir

A King of England some several centuries ago insisted a weir be built here so that he could cross the river – to enjoy his hawking. Ah how the other half lived! At least now it is a lovely picnic spot for Penny, me and the dog.  Hot soup, great sandwiches and superb company.  

We stopped here at the north end of the Lee Valley Park on the way back from a walk in Bishop’s Stortford.  
Incidentally, whenever I see a weir I cannot but help recall something our English teacher (Mr Thickett) taught us at school to help us remember the exceptions to the, ‘i’ before ‘e’ except after ‘c’, rule.  It went something like this, “Sheila and Keith, the protein-eating counterfeiters were seized by weird thoughts at the weir.”  He taught us that 35 years ago.  I still remember it. The power of a good mnemonic or rhyme is amazing.

Mothering Lunch

Mothering Sunday is always special. After church Fred and I took Mum out for lunch. And a very fine lunch it was in a packed restaurant where everyone and his mother was out to make mum feel special.

Fred was, as always, great company and a good laugh! I am now ready for an afternoon nap, but that's not going to happen since I am on the tube down to Covent Garden to preach at the Central London church service. That will be fun – then I predict a snooze on the tube on the way home!

My weekly Friday morning highlight is meeting with the London staff. Today we met at the amazing British Library. Old jokes were provided by Adrian, new insights by Barry and youth by Ian!

We studied the example of Jesus from Mk 5.21 to the end of the chapter. He made it a priority to go everywhere with his disciples, to show compassion to people from all backgrounds, to make sure people find peace – and in all he did to have a quality of faith that seemed laughable to others.

Tea in Neros

After a great chat over rather good coffee with Steve in Kensal Rise it was off to Willesden for more coffee with my Kenyan friend Roy.
Next stop is my favourite coffee shop – Neros. Here it is time for afternoon tea with Harry and Chris.

Spring is Sprung

Spring is here, the daffs are out, the sun is shining and I am off for a coffee in the sunshine with my good friend Steve.