I managed to fit 5 years of visits into less than three months. Thanks to the change over scenes at the theatre I was able to take a few trips in five days I did Taunton, Torquay and Plymouth and saw people I hadn't seen in an age. As I write this I am on my last set of visits to people I haven't seen in perhaps five years.
Probably the most memorable event from the summer would be BONES which I didn't think I was going to be as involved in but once I met all the great people who God sent along to be part of the team via in the internet (they found out about bones online.) I couldn't not be around. So as I was working full time I would go before work and after work even just being around that many young people and that much life and craziness literally gave me life again I would really look forward to being there. Of course there were ups and downs from time to time but it was great to be part of.
We had many young people from all over the place including Holland, Germany, Switzerland, France, USA to name a few places they got thoroughly involved in the 11 day camp which was aimed to give a short term mission experience to young people in London at the Notting Hill Carnival. So throughout the the time there were talks about character, evangelism and other discipleship topics. Some days the group went to Hyde Park with a Portuguese Kings kids team who joined us some of the time as well. So off we went with the guys of stilts and the singers from the Portuguese team who through themselves into the evangelism shouting FREE HUGS which people were blown over many despite thinking what is going on here accepted.
It is true to say that where ever we went even when we weren't in costume stood out well with half our team on Stilts it wasn't surprising. The first day we went out to invite people to the Salsa me and Vanessa had a great conversation with a girl from Australia and a guy from New Zealand they were hippy types so we connected straight away I shared about our community and also that God was waiting for the him when he wanted to return because he told us how he had been involved in some Christian camps when he was younger. It is funny they way God chases us across the world sometimes isn't it?
Most of our team didn't sleep for two weeks, our boys started Stilt walking as soon as they got off the plane I saw pictures of them doing it at 3am the same day that was quite common to have Stilt walking rehearsals at 3am. Some of the girls even learnt to dance whilst walking on Stilts. Some of the boys were absolute naturals looking like they had been doing it for years and others took a little longer but most of them were on the parade and wandered around during the carnival. So apart from the Stilt walking there was a 15 foot tree with leaves as flags which needed to be made which I had the pleasure to participate in. I was probably one of the few ones to actually get some sleep during the week not tonnes but some well I had to be fairly function able for working in the theatre. However the night before the carnival after working a 9 hour shift I cam back ate and worked on the tree until 4 or 5am and then I got up 3 hours later for the carnival.
The strength we all found during that week was incredible I would go as far as to say Supernatural, when you think of the supernatural you think of healings well we saw it in our lack of sleep and in the kitchen feeding loads and loads of people over 70 people