Last night we attended a soiree that our neighbors invited us to. Our voisin (neighbor) and his wife started an organization here in Aix that puts on parties for physically and mentally challenged people in the area, and last night was their first one. We felt honored that they would invite us, but I must admit that I wasn't all that sure about going, especially since last night was to be "speed dating" night!
It turns out that we are very glad we went! We met a lovely older couple-he is a professor of Political Science here, and their son makes the wine that was sampled last night. We also met a cool guy who is a P.S. student~he speaks 5 languages and is headed to China soon to be a spokesperson for the French at the Olympics in Beijing. He was very interested in what we do here in Aix, and asked for our phone number to talk more. He also wants to come to church next week! He told us quite a bit about what our neighbor's organization does, and how it is so needed here.
As we looked around the room, we began to see not just people in wheel chairs and with walkers, but people who were really enjoying the party. They were talking and eating and swaying to the music. There was laughter and joy in their faces. Our new friend told us that there is nowhere for disabled people to go to enjoy music and be together in big groups, so this organization provides that for them.
We are so glad we were able to go and support our neighbors at their premier event!
In other news, I will be cooking today and tomorrow for a 40th birthday party that my friend Hilary and I are hosting for our Tunisian friend Riadh. There are about 40 people attending, and it should be a great time. This is a guy Teal met through some other friends who were here for 6 months, and has been developing a relationship with him over the past 8 months or so. He is bringing 10 people, and the rest are people who are in our [iccp] community who just want to love on him and his friends, and get to know him better. I think it will be a very special evening, and a wonderful chance for us to just surround him with God's love. We are part of such an amazing community here, and it is so incredible to be able to share that with people from all over the world!