October 06, 2015

The Seventh Time - In an Airport (part 1)

When we discovered we'd be missing each other's trips to South Africa by only a couple months, we were bummed.  But accepted the reality of it.

But as the time drew nearer, my missions coordinator and I began wishing and dreaming about a South African meet-up.  After all, she was going to be on the same continent - so close, yet so far away.

Then one day, she said, "Come on. What do we have to do to make this happen?"
So I started looking at airline tickets.  "About $250 and permission to take time off." I replied casually.

Then she said it, "Okay, buy the tickets.  They're paid for."


Wait, what? Unicorns? Huh?

As I boarded that plane in the wee hours of Friday morning, leaving behind my little boy for the first time (for a period longer than 12 hours), the seventh time began approaching me.  (you can read about the first six times here)

I couldn't get over the surreality (is that even a word) of it all for the longest time.  I have been flying since I was six years old, but I hadn't flown alone for about 15 years.  That's a really long time.  I didn't know what to do with myself.  I even had an entire row to myself for one of the flights.  Bliss.

I arrived in Johannesburg with about 4 hours to kill before the Crosspoint team arrived.  I grabbed some amazing fish & chips for lunch, then walked around browsing the stores and people watching.  (remember, to this turning-Tanzanian girl, South Africa may as well be America, I was completely okay sitting in an airport for 4 hours)

When the team arrived and hugs were passed all around I found myself not being able to let go of my Dawn.  She's a friend, fellow missionary, and our missions coordinator in the states, and I hadn't seen her in about 15 months.  Man, did God know we needed this.

We carted ourselves to the curb to load up in the bus and that was it.  The Seventh Time.
Sitting there, in the dark bus, surrounded by a bunch of Americans, and also, next to my Dawn.

Little did I know what else God had in store for this trip...

{to be continued}