Tuesday, October 20, 2009

It's the Little Things...

In Taipei, we have two seasons. We have a very wet winter and two months of “I’ll bring my umbrella just in case.” The last several weeks have been quite soggy indeed. Anyone who has visited or lived in a city like Seattle or London can appreciate the quiet gloom that settles in after three weeks without a glimpse of the sun. This weekend, our despair was relieved as the sun burned through the clouds and dried up some of the long-standing puddles. In order to replenish our vitamin D stores, we decided to go with some friends to one of our favorite ice cream places after church.

Big Tom’s is famous for a few reasons. First of all, they make delicious ice cream. And they don’t just have boring vanilla, either. The menu boasts flavors like rum cherry, green tea, mango passion fruit, and (the newest addition after November of last year) Obama Chocolate Brownie. Believe me, I couldn’t make this stuff up if I tried. And, yes, we’ve had it; and yes, it is delicious. The second thing that sets Big Tom apart, other than the racially and/or politically geared dairy products, are their spoons. Evidently, they have gone to some trouble to discover that if your taste buds are physically stimulated while you eat, you will enjoy your ice cream even more. Therefore, they have developed a patented massaging spoon designed to stimulate your tongue in order to achieve the optimal tasting experience. In addition to all this, Big Tom’s is ideally located with a patio overlooking a pretty little lake with a spectacular view of the 101. It is a great place to go to sit back, relax, and take in some sun.

(Unfortunately, I didn’t have our camera with me, so this is an “archives” photo)

On extra special days, Big Tom’s provides live entertainment. Usually, it is some local band or musician playing traditional or modern Chinese music. Sometimes, if we are lucky, the band will notice that there are foreigners in the audience so they will break out “I Will Always Love You” or some other cheesy American classic. We usually appreciate the effort and give them the approving smile and applause that they look for after their set.

This Sunday, however, we were in for a very special treat. As we staked out a table on the picturesque patio, we noticed that the band setting up was comprised of all foreigners. Encouraged that we might recognize some of their music, we decided to camp out a bit longer. When they did their sound check, we all perked up and looked at each other. Was that what I think it was? Was it really a Christian worship song? Sure enough, the band played their first song all about God’s love. We couldn’t believe it! With the help of a translator, they introduced themselves to the unsuspecting crowd as a group from all over the United States who was there simply to share God’s love with the people of Taiwan. We were thrilled. What better way to present the message of the Gospel than through music on a sunny afternoon at an ice cream shop? We stayed through a few songs but ultimately decided to give up our prime seats for some of the Taiwanese crowd that had begun to gather.

As we walked back to the car, we all commented on how pleasantly the day had turned out. We got some sun, we got some ice cream, we got our tongues massaged, and we got some worship music. What more can you ask for?

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