Since the Wednesday before last I've had another heavy cold. Not a man-cold, in case any of you ladies get on your usual high horses, but a real stinker, one that's had me coughing so hard that I can scarcely breathe, and has made my sinuses so sore that every time I blew my nose or sniffed over the last day or so, it feels like my head has been about to crack open.
Of course, all the women out there will be saying, man-cold, man-cold, as they always do. I'm not surprised men don't go to the doctor more readily; they get mocked at for being sick. Do us guys mock women for trying out the latest weight loss pills? We wouldn't think of it. So give us a break, women.
Anyway, in the middle of all this, I've also been accompanying one of the singers in the senior vocal competitions here in Dunedin - even made it into the finals of the Otago Daily Times Aria Competition. I also played on Saturday for one of the bandsmen at the Provincial Competitions at Mosgiel, and I've coped with a very important meeting at work, one in which at least two people were in tears, and strong words were spoken, and truth was finally allowed some breathing room. (Incidentally neither my singer or bandsman got up into the top placings this time around. Ce la vie.)
And today, as part of my continuing education through work, I attended the first day of the Calvin Conference. (We have another day tomorrow.) I found it interesting, but couldn't have sat through the whole day, even if I hadn't had to go to the doctor's. Apart from my bum getting sore after two or three hours sitting on a hard chair, my brain concentration just gives up eventually. I listened to Professor Randall Zackman, who talked about Calvin and the beauty of the Universe, and how it's a sign to us that God is speaking. But in fact his message, if it had been pared down to bare essentials, was basically good old fashioned Gospel - disguised, somewhat, as an academic lecture.
The next speaker was Jason Goroncy, who spoke on John Calvin: Servant of the Word. I'm hoping he'll put the paper up on his blog, as he spoke at considerable speed, and I had difficulty taking notes. Some moments of real passion emerged from his talk, perhaps to the surprise of his audience!
I left after lunch and went and went for a walk and some fresh air, Knox College being conveniently close to the Botanical Gardens. Finally I came back to listen to Kirstine Moffat, who spoke about Calvinism and New Zealand Literature. I enjoyed this, though it seemed slightly off on a tangent from the main topic of the Conference. However, good to have it there.