Here I sit, with the customary clutter surrounding me, the hours sliding by ceaselessly. It's atypical that I'm even writing this at a decent hour; over the last week or so I've been letting the night overtake me. Somehow I always slip back into my nonproductivity.
At least I can say this time it hasn't been as long as previous times. It's been less than a week since my declination. Just last Wednesday I spent a couple of hours at Catholic Charities, my second week in a row helping with a Wednesday night meal for about 130 homeless folks. The first week I came with a few other young adults through my parish, and then I asked if they could use any help on a more frequent basis since my parish only helps maybe once per month. So they let me come again last week, though there ended up being a little less work for me.
A couple of saturday's ago I went with about 15 other young adults from my parish to spend the morning with a bunch of other volunteer groups from around the city at the Greater Chicago Food Depository. Our particular task was to take a few pallets stacked with boxes of onions, and sort the rotten ones (roughly 90%) from the ones that were still good. See the above link for more info about the organization, they take food that would normally be dumped but may still be good, and distribute it to a variety of organizations throughout Chicagoland that serve the poor.
I've also checked out a bible study, a bi-monthly young adult's mass (every other month?), and a "day of prayer" with 90 other Catholic young adults from the diocese, put on by a ministry group I'm just learning about. When I dive into something, I really dive in. Part of it is because it takes so much exposure for me to get into a groove, so it just makes sense. This was mostly in connection with my last post on "loneliness", I realized it's not necessarily selfish to admit a longing like that, nor is it necessarily selfish to allow that to be a motivating factor in my degree of involvement in volunteer service.
Nonetheless, I miss my friends for precisely who they are, and no amount of searching for fellow wanderers with similar thirsts for social justice in my local area can replace my existing friends scattered through the region and the country.
Geek update: I've installed Yellowdog Linux 4.0 on my 12" Apple Powerbook and can finally breathe easy with a familiar Linux kernel and environment, though the Airport Extreme requires a reboot into OSX to work. As I suspected, this Fedora 2 port, with KDE, runs far faster than OSX.