The days are getting shorter. Water is falling from the sky. The temperature has dropped. And I am now finally sleeping under a duvet. Yep thats right folks. Autumn has officially made its was to town. And other than the very noticeable decline in sunlight hours, I am loving it. Wrapping up in warmer clothes. Wearing socks on my feet. It’s starting to feel a little bit more like home. This will be my first autumn and winter here in Perth, so I am now in uncharted territory. I’ve been told what to expect, but you never can know in full until you’ve experienced it for yourself. So I look forward to the coming months with anticipation.
But that isn’t the only new adventure to be had! It could never be said that life here at YWAM Perth is boring. So many new people, cultures, and foods to be explored, stories to be shared, and fun to be had. And this week for me and my colleagues, new skills to be learnt….in the kitchen. For this week, and this week only (until next month anyway) the Megacities team has been allowed out of the office and is working in the kitchen every morning. I confess that I was at first feeling quite apprehensive about this prospect, but it turns out we are all having a blast. Being out of the office, spending time doing practical, hands on work that serves everybody on base is really most rewarding, and I’m learning lots along the way.
For the past 2 days, one of my friends and I were given the task of preparing desert for Wednesday evening. Every week on base, Wednesday and Saturday night is desert night, and so we were given the challenge of preparing desert for 360 people. Quite the responsibility! Failure was not an option, as hundreds of hungry, disappointed YWAMers would have resulted with our inability to provide desert. But to the challenge we rose – by baking cake. And lots of it. Now I don’t know if you have ever baked cake (or more like cookies in this instance) for 360 people, but it really is quite the challenge. We went through tubs of margarine. Bags of sugar and flour. And a whole giant bowl of icing sugar. But we succeeded! And tonight, following a yummy dinner, 360 squares of cookie, shortbready cakey things were presented beautifully onto the tables of happy missionaries. An accomplishment of which I am very proud.
But its not just the sense of achievement that has made this process fun. It’s also all the things that I’ve learnt whilst doing it. Like how to use the giant food mixer. How to bake in mass bulk. How to use numerous other gadgets in the kitchen, and indeed, where everything is kept. And I’ve even made some new friends in the process. And the more I learn about how this base runs, such as how incredibly hard the people in the kitchen work every single day to make sure that we all get fed and that there is food in the cupboard, the more this place feels like home. Working in the kitchen really has given me a much greater appreciation of all that goes on behind the scenes here on base to make my job, and in fact, my life here, possible. We may be helping out for a week, but there are people here whose full time ministry is making sure that we all get fed every single day.
So today, I dedicate this post to the behind the scenes heroes of YWAM Perth. To those who make our shopping lists, do stock counts, prepare weekly menus, organise our food and arrange it in the cooler and even more unbearable, the freezer, who serve food on hundreds of dishes every single day, spend hours and hours on their feet chopping, grating, stirring and mixing, thank you. Your hard work, dedication and commitment does not go unnoticed. And I for one am incredibly grateful. You guys rock.