Friday, November 20, 2009

Old Europe

Rotterdam:  Here for a week in Holland, then Spain to spend Thanksgiving with our daughter Megan,  Rebecca and I along with our oldest daughter, Rachel, are being hosted by Laurent Nouwen (Henri´s brother) at his house in Rotterdam.


Laurent, who looks a lot like Henri, is a marvelous host.  He loves classical music, modern art, good wine, old cheese, a roaring fire, and honest conversation.  I find in him a compelling man of practical wisdom, with keen insight and stimulating ideas.  We certainly have gained a friend this week. Laurent, at 65, is energetic and passionate about his mission in Ukraine which his brother suggested before he died in 1996.   He retired from his 30 year law practice to run the Henri Nouwen Foundation which supports a number of projects in Ukraine and South Africa.   It also hosts an annual lecture event to which we have been invited to speak on Saturday night in Utrecht.

We also plan to visit  the church where Henri Nouwen was ordained and where his memorial service was held on Sunday.  On Monday we´ll have lunch with our journalist friend, Jim Forrest and his wife Nancy in Alkmaar.  On Tuesday we plan to see The Hague, and then fly to Spain on Wednesday for Thanksgiving weekend with our youngest daughter, Megan, who is in Madrid for 10 months as a High School Rotary exchange student.

I´ll try to post some photos and commentary along the way for family and friends.