Amy’s New Book

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She Speaks Graduate
Sharper Focus

Many people dream of seeing the world. Ask vision-challenged globetrotter Amy Bovaird, and she will settle for seeing it in a little sharper focus. Follow Amy--but not too closely--on adventures foreign and domestic as she recounts tales of trips and travel.

Dining Out in a New Language

Most of us love food ~ especially when we don’t have to prepare it ourselves! Dining out is usually the solution! Dining in a restaurant with foreign food is also something many of us enjoy. We know that we can have Italian food without really speaking Italian. Or French food without really speaking French. But sometimes we are challenges to order in that other language. It’s part of the experience.

One the occasion of my father’s 42nd birthday, I was instrumental in helping us to choose a suitable restaurant in which to eat. I couldn’t think of anything better than the one I chose.  At the time, I was in finishing Middle School so was eleven or twelve.  I was certain my father would love Japanese food. After all, we did have a Japanese aunt who married into our family! I even remember  thinking that maybe we could order in Japanese. Was I surprised when I found out that my did didn’t especially care for Japanese food! Nor did he want to order in Japanese or eat with o’hashi (chopsticks).I think he longed for a good ol’ baked potato and steak!

Feeling a little let down after finding my  big birthday meal idea flop, I decided not to pursue my own agenda on anyone else’s birthday in the future.

But I still loved the wonderful movies where the characters sought out restaurants with foreign foods. It didn’t matter if it was ethnic food in New York City, Bavarian food in Michigan or Chinese food in Chinatown. Better yet, I marveled at the movies in which the characters actually traveled to foreign countries and attempted to order their meals in that other language, no matter how faltering their language skills seemed to  be.  It just seemed they always had so much fun communicating.

When I watched this video clip, I was reminded of those initial days of longing to try new foods combined with an atmosphere where I stretched myself to understand another culture and interact in that culture.

Now that I find myself facing dual challenges of hearing and vision loss, I wonder if God didn’t  give me that piqued interest of language for just such a time in my life.

How I love language! Usually, I stand on the outskirts of a culture before I jump in and try to interact. In language terms, it’s the silent period. The period when one doesn’t speak. Instead, it’s a time of marked observation before the person feels comfortable enough to interact. I think I had a period of five years where I didn’t know where or how I fit in.

And now, I’m ready to experience the culture.

It does my heart good to see people who embrace other cultures. I can feel that fluttery feeling in my heart that means there’s something happening to bridge a gap, and people are growing closer and forging deeper understanding.

Just by being themselves and offering it up without apology.

I think God gave me a love for new cultures, not just foreign ones but all kinds of different cultures, because it was part of His divine plan for my life. He knows I want to fit in, reach out and draw others in.

It’s only now that I can begin to do that, probably because part of my fear of the unknown is leaving me. God is replacing that fear with people who show me my life will be even richer with my new experiences and friendships.

I’m just thinking as I write this now. All this came out when I watched this wonderful video a friend sent me, and I wanted to share it with you.

http://www.trueactivist.com/at-first-this-looked-like-a-normal-restaurant-but-then-i-realized-the-amazing-truth/#.VEmFHMZx8vI.facebook

Would you like to dine with me in this restaurant?

Looking for Inspirational Romance?

When my writing colleague asked for people to join her blog tour to introduce her new book, I quickly volunteered for the task. I love romance and couldn't wait to find out more about her book and characters! But I'm jumping ahead of myself. Read the rest of this entry »

Book Launch Pools Efforts of Vision-Impaired

"I have a vision-impaired friend who has a basket ministry," Marilyn said when I mentioned I wanted to have some giveaway baskets. "She collects things to add to baskets and does a lovely job." "She's got the job!" I joked, noting that it was a volunteer position. Read the rest of this entry »

Start Small

It's typical to measure our worth as we compare ourselves to others. Wherever I went, I struggled to feel confident about myself. In Japan, where everyone wants to blend in, my vision made me stand out. My Japanese boyfriend oftentimes disassociated himself from me on the train as I tripped over roped off sections, traffic cones, school children seated on the ground--what or whoever was in my blind spot. When I looked up, he was several paces (or seats) away. Read the rest of this entry »

I’m No Squiggle!

The whole transaction happened so fast I didn't have time to respond. I held the receipt in my hand with its squiggly line drawn in place of my name, and lifted it closer to examine it. What was this supposed to mean? I thumped my head with the palm of my hand and rolled my eyes. Read the rest of this entry »

Buddy Boy, a Popular Character

One of my favorite characters in Mobility Matters is "Buddy," the four-legged Even as a youth, Buddy had a way of drawing people to him. companion I brought back from the Middle East. A quiet, unobtrusive stray black Lab mix I picked up at the men's branch of the college where I teach, Buddy slowly but steadily wagged his way into my hea Read the rest of this entry »

God’s Special Pre-launch Dance

I notice a pattern in these kinds of things. Something I expected to fall into place goes terribly wrong, and I think, oh no, my life is ruined. Nothing is going to work out. Read the rest of this entry »

A Model to Follow

Bob had excellent cane skills and challenged me to solve my own problems in our mobility training. Best of all, he modeled a perspective of success. He did not let other people determine his outlook. Read the rest of this entry »

Mobility Matters Coming Soon

October 1 begins National Disabilities Employment Month AND National Cane Safety Month. Looking back, I’m amazed at my own progress! A year ago, these issues were not part of my active vocabulary Read the rest of this entry »

Basking in the Sunshine

I love basking in the sunshine, could totally live forever in a tropical country if it weren't for my family here. At one time, I savored the heady sunshine in Latin America, San Antonio and then, later in the Middle East. Now that kind of sunshine ... where people crave the rain, now that's where it's at! Read the rest of this entry »