Tim's blog

Driving In Ireland

Posted by Tim on 3 November 2008 - 4:36pm

Here in Ireland we have to eventually get what is know as a 'full Irish license'.  In order to do that you first have to pass the computerized 40 question 'Theory' test.  35 or better is the required 'pass' rate.

Several weeks ago Kathy passed her theory test on the first try, but Tim (that would be me) came up one question short!  So, in between everything else over the last couple of months I have been studying to give the test another try.  The retest was scheduled for Tuesday, 29th October at 12:00 noon!  I got in the car (sort of ironic!) and drove the 30 minutes or so to get to the testing center on the North side of Dublin.

Upon my arrival the testing center was not yet open and there were several others waiting outside in the cold.  I had a chance to invite a couple of them to sit in my car where it was warm, I had a chance to share a bit with an Irish woman and a man from Nigeria.  Sometimes God even gives us a chance to plant seeds at a government office!

At any rate, at 12:40 PM I found out that I had joined my wife with a passing score - 39 out of 40 (hum, what did I miss??).  Now we have to pass a vision test and apply for our 'provisional' Irish drivers license.  Fortunately it is legal for us to drive using our American license . . .  for now!  


The Sky is Falling!

Posted by Tim on 25 October 2008 - 6:35am

  Today (Saturday morning 25th October)started with a BANG, literally!  Jeff and Caroline Hay are spending a few days with us here in Ballycullen considering what the Lord would have them do concerning leadership at our church - and just as we were all getting going we heard a big thud outside.  Then our doorbell rang and it was our neighbor asking us to move our car - the sky, or more accurately, the roof is falling!

When you take a look at the pictures, you can see it was to late for our little car!  The large slate tiles from 2 floor up had smashed into the bonnet (hood) of our car and sent a spider web of cracks into our windscreen (wind shield).  There is also a deep hole in the sheet metal near the side mirror.

We have learned that this had happened before and our poor neighbors had their roof fixed and inspected - the whole building is only 4 years old and they (our neighbors) are very upset.  Pray for them with us as we think this is a chance for them to see Jesus in us.  We told them that the car is just a chuck of metal and glass and that it is not nearly as important as people.  Pray that God will use this for his glory in their lives.  The wind (60+ mph) is still howling and there is the potential of more rood damage, but God will use this we are convinced.

We're not sure about our car insurance coverage as it is not spelled out as it is in the states, but however that works out, we want to reach our neighbors.  Thanks for praying with us!


 look at the roof above the people on the right, near the sky light...

close up of roofHere's a close up of the roof with tiles missing and one hanging on the sky light - it fell a minute later.

In front of our house

  This is what it looked like in front of our house after we moved the cars -

Our car   

It's hard to see here, but the right side of the bonnet (hood) is smasked and the windshield is a total loss!



Tullagh Is Growing!

Posted by Tim on 18 October 2008 - 5:52am

  Tullagh, our 3 month old Golden Retriever Puppy (Guide Dog in Training) has more than doubled in size in the 7 weeks we have had him (from 6 kilos (12 pounds) to 12 kilos).  The picture below was taken earlier this week while we were at the Giants Causeway on the North Sea in Northern Ireland.  This is a typical scene with people wanting to come up and 'meet' Tullagh.

We are very grateful that the Lord is giving us this opportunity to earn credibility here in our new country.  If you have ever raised a puppy you know that it is a lot of work; and we are learning that the things we are doing to help train this young guide dog require lots of patience.  Kathy is so very good at this, much better than me (Tim), but as a team things are starting to take shape.

Today (Sat) we are going to some kind of exhibition for The Irish Guide Dog Association. We think we will have chances to meet lots of new people, and to get to know fellow 'puppy walkers' as well.  Tullagh is now completely house broken, waits for us to blow a whistle before he eats his food, and has learned how to sit 'on command' - sort of!!  There is much more for him to learn in the next 10 months, but I think he is going to be a great guide dog

Our next door neighbors LOVE him and are always anxious to see and pet him,

Kathy with Tullagh

National Ploughing Championships!

Posted by Tim on 27 September 2008 - 10:42am

    Tuesday was a first for Kieran and me, even though Kieran has lived in Ireland most of his life he  had never been to the annual Irish National Ploughing Champships (NPC).  This HUGE event happens every September somewhere in Ireland and it is a REALLY BIG DEAL.  Now you might think that its all about ploughing (plowing) on a quiet Irish farm somewhere right?  Wrong.  We were in Kilkenny, site of this year's championship, from about 1:00 until 7:00 PM and did not see a single ploughing 'event'.

We did see about 80,000 people, however, gathering into a tent city that would exist for 3 days only, then revert back to a working farm! The NPC is very much like a huge American state fair . . . tons of food booths, exhititions by most business interests in the nation; especially heavy equipment like tracktors, harvestors, loaders, etc.

Kieran, Sam (a wonderful man from our church) and I spent lots of time handing out New Testaments, cds and other materials to many.  Our tent offered free tea and biscuts as well as tray bakes (home make goodies) to tired attendees.  I had a chance to talk to Liam, a former Catholic who did not think Jesus was God, but came into existence at his physical birth.  We talked for quite a while and then he had tea while thinking about John 14:6-9 as well as John chapter 1.  Pray for Liam when you think about it. . . 

  Here are some pictures I took that I thought you might enjoy. . .

NPC Road Sign A road sign on the way from Dublin, the normal drive time is 2 hours, but it took us almost 4.










Sea of Tents



A part of the sea of tents and other exhibitors covering a huge area near Kilkenny






Inside our Tent


The 'free tea' area in the back of our tent with tired attendees taking a break







Craig & Kieran


This is what one wall of the tent looked like with Craig (L), Kieran and another worker.  You can also see a bit of the front where we greeted people and invited them in . . .





Vintage Loom

This man was showing how Irish wool used to be woven by hand into tradional plaid patterns.  You can see old farm equipment in the background.  We also saw a 'red wool' sheep waiting to be shorn (if that's really a word.

Syndicate content