I just sat in the window for 45 minutes, watching the storm move through the city and on out over the lake. There wasn't a whole lot of rain or noise, in fact it was about as "still" a storm as I've ever seen, with just the sudden attacks of lightning against the steeples of the Gesu or over the high bridge on I-794 to bring on the thunder at irregular intervals. One girl in red came out of the freshman dorm across the street to jump in puddles and laugh for about half an hour. Only the occasional car and inevitable firetruck indicated that we weren't the only two people in the city. The lights on Wisconsin Ave stayed steady and orange, and the round white circle of one of the old German clocktowers to the south sat above the city like a toy moon.
It felt like a gift of a moment, to just sit and realize how good all this was. That despite the disasters in the South, and a year where I'd endured more physical pain than I'd ever known, everything in life seemed to add up to quiet pauses like this, where life seemed so simple and unremarkable, and so much more than anyone could have wished for. Quiet, insightful talk and easy laughter in Mickey's office today, sharing a common professional delight; the eager insight of Sara in tonight's tutorial, walking through Augustine's Confessions and sharing the joy of an excited student who is working all of this out for the first time; sitting at Webb's with Meg through her frustration, as she moves through her own theological work, but is seized up in her ability to think the faith, but not to feel it. All of these hours with others seemed to add up to this feeling, sitting in the window with the rain and the lightning, that everything seems to come together in some way: like a pattern I can enjoy, but not describe.
Today is the birthday of college roommate Pastor David Nutting of Somewherearounddallas, Texas. And my cousin Steve Novak, who was kind of like an older brother to me, growing up across the street from one another. [Edit:Mom wrote me a polite email saying that she thought Steve's birthday was the 16th. I think she's right. That's what I get for not hanging out with him since high school. I was looking at that last night as I was typing, in fact, and thinking that I had something wrong or missing. Maybe that was it.] Other people who move in and out of the story at times.