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Last weekend James and I traveled to Des Moines, Iowa to visit my sister and her fiance. We enjoyed our time with them and seeing where they live and work and go to church. On Saturday we made the 45 minute drive to Pella, the town where I grew up. I lived there from age 6 to 16 although it’s now been nearly 15 years since we moved away.

Going back to Pella is always a rather surreal experience. I’ve been back 6 or 7 times since we moved; the last time was 4 or 5 years ago. So many things have changed, and yet there is always plenty that remains exactly the same. The latest additions since I was last there are the Vermeer windmill at the Historical Village and the Molengracht plaza. (We got to have lunch with dear friends who live in one of the condos above the Molengracht. Beautiful place!) Various parts of Pella – especially the two schools that I attended – are still frequent settings of my dreams, something that made going back and seeing the actual locations yet more surreal.

Another factor this time exacerbating the surreality even further was the Harley-Davidson convention that had taken over much of downtown. It seemed that Sturgis up and moved to Pella. Weird.

In any case, it was great fun showing James around the town where I spent most of my childhood and adolescence. And of course getting to indulge in the joy that is Jaarsma Bakery. Ah those Dutch letters

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