Blog Day 6: It took awhile to gather the group this morning, as some actually made the journey to the church by boat. But once we did gather, we had the chance to enjoy a few last minutes gathered together in their beautiful sanctuary - this time with the morning sun shining majestically through the stained glass while we prayed and sang. Not a bad way to start the morning.
Our new driver, Deborah, joined the Gold Bus and we made the hour and a half drive in just over 2 hours You know, if you miss your turn on these mountain roads (which we did a few times), it’s not all that easy to turn one of these rigs around. We had a quick picnic lunch at the Toccoa Valley Campground, then grabbed our tubes and lifejackets and floated two hours down the Tocca River It was very fun and very relaxing. For most of us, anyway. Rather than take the relaxed approach, Jane Webb decided to do a back flip into the river. The judges gave her an 8.5. Groups of kids tied their tubes together and floated en masse for parts of the trip. We had a tight schedule, so as quickly as we could, we shuttled back to the campground and hopped back on the buses.
So the medical report for today: Carly moved from a soft cast to a hard cast for her broken thumb. Cameron got his hand smashed during orchestra set-up . . . splint for now, more to follow. As you might imagine, given the intense 95 degree sunshine beating down on us all afternoon, we had quite a few with sunburn. We quickly got some industrial strength aloe, hoping to soothe things a bit. Surprisingly there has been very little complaining!
Tonight our concert at First UMC of Union County (Blairsville, GA) was an hour earlier than normal. So we hurriedly unpacked the vans and buses (oops, looks like our last host church has inherited a couple dozen DUMC music stands), gobbled down a pizza dinner and tried to clean up as best we could. Only so much you can do when you’ve been soaking in river water all afternoon.
This contemporary church sits high atop a hill in a wide open, mountain community. As only Walt can, he convinced the music director of the church to cancel their own choir practice to allow us to play our full concert. It’s hard to figure out how it happens, but there is a transformation that happens during these concerts. This afternoon it was apparent these kids are really worn out - a lack of sleep, busy days, high heat and humidity have taken their toll. Then they spend a couple of hours playing and singing, glorifying God, and emerge revitalized. The Holy Spirit is surely at work, thanks be to God!
Click Here for Pictures of Day 6