Wednesday, February 6, 2013

We have arrived!! Let the games begin...

We have arrived! We arrived 2 days ago after 2 long flights. We flew from San Francisco to London and had a 10hr stopover there, which was fantastic. We got to meet up with one of my dearest friends, Josephine, whom I had not seen since I stayed with her in Australia 5 years ago! We got to meet each other's husbands, which was so fun, we all got along great and laughed pretty much the entire time. Got to do the double decker red bus, ate at a fabulous steak house and saw Buckingham palace :) Josephine and Steve Mafi are the best tour guides, we will be sure to return!

The flight from London to Cape Town was terrible, but we survived :) lets just say both of us squished between 2 others on a 12 hour flight without any movies cuz the system is down, is no fun. I know first world problems, we are thankful we arrived safely! Customs was a breeze! We've never had an easier time getting into a country, that was a huge relief! Our phones had died by the,n so we don't have photos to show how beautiful the hour long drive from Cape Town to Franschhoek was.

We arrived to Franschhoek Travelers Lodge, which is a backpacker/hostel accommodation. It's quite nice, we have our own section blocked off which is a real blessing. It's like having our own lil apartment :) we have a kitchen a
nice big bathroom with a shower and tub and a very good sized bedroom with a super comfy bed.
All of this is connected by a hallway which makes it feel even bigger- we are very pleased! We unpacked today and got things organized, which feels great.

We have had 2 days to really unwind and get on schedule. The flight did a number on us and we had super swollen legs and jet lag like never before. Looking forward to going to bed at a decent hour and not waking up until the morning. Last night I was up from 10:30pm-5am, I could not sleep! Tonight will be different, I can feel it :)

Today we met with Minnie, who is our contact person here. She is a coloured woman (see Here and  Here for more info on their racial group and history) who is a social worker here and is very involved in her community, which is about 4km away, and also our community of Franschhoek. She is the head of YEA (see our last post for more info on this organization) who runs the pool we will be teaching at. This is her husband Adam cleaning the pool

Since Minnie is so involved in the community, we offered to help her in any way we can. We let her know we came to serve, not just at the pool. She was so thrilled and she said "oh I have a lot of things to keep you busy in the community." Here is our schedule the rest of the week:
Thursday(tomorrow): We are running to Minnie's area, I forget the name of it, and spending time with the youth she works with. She has 3 different age groups she is working with, tomorrow is 6-14yr olds.
Friday: Minnie will be my first student and have her first lesson with me in the afternoon. She said she may also bring her friend, a 2.5yr old girl, who I can't wait to meet!!

Saturday: We will participate in the 27 to Freedom walk. Here's info i found online about it: Come walk/run in the footsteps of Madiba,Every South African, should in their lifetime, walk/run in the footsteps of Nelson Mandela. All the events start in front of the statue of Nelson Mandela at the beginning of his `walk to freedom‘ on February 11th, 1990 and progress through a scenic route that passes the Madiba House, the prison. But 27 for Freedom is more than a running event. It is an experience everyone should participate in at least once in their life time. It is a historic, yet fun-filled, family day of reflection, celebration and nation building for the tens of thousands that will participate from across the sports, social, business and political landscape. It contributes directly to the preservation and promotion of the Nelson Mandela legacy and the historic `right of passage’ that his walk to freedom represent to current and future generations of South Africans and all freedom loving people. We will do the fun walk portion with Minnie and 180 children she is bringing with her. We can't wait!!

Sunday: We will be at the police station for 2 hours volunteering with trauma victims. While the police do paperwork and put together the loose ends of cases, we will sit with the victims so they have someone there to comfort them and just be a presence for them. Usually this will be Saturday so we can have Sunday/Monday off.
We are loving it here and are so excited to get involved in the community and do whatever we can.

Here are some ways you can keep us in prayer:
*For the school to solidify the schedule and students needing lessons so we can begin next week.
*For all the things mentioned above, that we will be well rested to participate in all of them, we will love with God's love, and we will be a light.
*that we could build our own community where we live, with the other people staying at the hostel and the hostel done the street, and with local neighbors
*For continued financial support as this is all voluntary. We'd also like to help raise money not just for us, but for the pool needs as well. The facility needs a lot of work and has a long way to go before it can be year-round, but it can be done.
*Continued support in prayer, we need all of it we can get, this is even more important than finances. We trust that God will continue to provide for us, He is more than able.
*That our marriage would continue to build a strong foundation, we are loving this!
If you would like to write a letter or send a care package, shoot us an email: and we will send the address. You can FB us as well.
Thanks for reading the entire post!!! We appreciate all the support we have gotten.

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