We are counting the hours to departure. We have moved out of our apartment, cancelled utilities, packed our belongings, and either given away or thrown away everything that won’t fit in an army duffel or Rubbermaid bin. We’re only taking what we can fit on the airplane with us. We won’t be shipping a container to Africa or anything like that. Many things are available there even if they are slightly more expensive or out of the way to obtain.
Before we actually hit African soil, we’ll be “checking-out” at the Africa Inland Mission headquarters in Georgia for 2-3 days. Then, on Thursday, August 22nd, we’ll take off from Atlanta. We’ll be traveling through D.C. and Zurich to get to Nairobi.
Just over a week ago, we didn’t quite know whether we were going to be able to fly into Kenya easily. You may have learned from news sources that a fire gutted the international arrivals hall of Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi. It was shut down as a result, and this is significant because it is the largest airport in East Africa. Thankfully, no one was seriously hurt, and it was quickly reopened. We, too, are still on schedule.
Things also seem to be shaping up for us nicely on the ground in Africa at the Rift Valley Academy. We are extremely thankful for Jeff and Angela Saunders, missionary staff at RVA, who have been arranging housing, transportation and meals in preparation for our arrival. It is comforting to know we already have friends on the ground waiting for us. In addition, we’ll also be able to spend our first day in Africa with my brother, Erik and sister-in-law, Amanda, and their four children. We’ll need to do some shopping together in Nairobi before heading to our new home in Kijabe, Kenya. Our boys are excited that they will be living close to their cousins.
We arrive in Africa on Friday, and my meetings in preparation for the new term begin on Monday. Eva and the boys will begin unpacking and adjusting to their new lives as well. We will need grace and flexibility to make this quick transition. Classes will then begin for me on September 3rd.
I also recently learned that I will be teaching sixth grade! Oftentimes, RVA will have two sixth grade teachers who split the subjects they teach, but the sixth grade class is small this year. I will be teaching all subjects to a class of 25 students. Around 15 of them will be boarding students who live on campus with dorm parents. The others live nearby with their parents who serve as missionaries in Kijabe. I can’t wait to start teaching and getting to know this group of kids and their families.