Joshua, a towering giant of an Englishman, passes me in the hall and calls out a cheery “Ello!”
In the flat upstairs, I sit down and close my eyes. The sound of laughter and conversation fills my ears.
Kneeling by the weed patch, I tug at a stubborn root and say, “My name is Katriana, I’m married to Kelvin, we live in Kazhakistan, we sell kites, and he is very kind.”
Now I’m sitting in the study room with dirt under my fingernails and a smudge of ink on my palm. A lecture on the Sacrament of the Present Moment still echoes in my ears.
I am at L’abri. The English L’abri, to be exact, about 50 miles from London, in the centre of the English countryside. This is the greenest place I have ever seen, with rolling hills dotted with sheep and twisted with muddy footpaths.
I live in The Manor House with about thirty other students. Men and women, young and old, staying for months or staying for a few days, we have formed a haphazard community of work, conversation, study, worship, and questions.
I’m not exactly sure what is supposed to happen here. I keep looking for the quissential L’abri experience, only to realize that every experience here is just that.