Archive for the ‘waiting’ Category

Thoughts From the Airport

Holy s*#t!! I’m here!!! My plane arrived on time in Guatemala City, and I have exchanged $160 for about 1200+ Quanzales. This should last me a little while in Antigua. I have to wait to be picked up from the airport because a Mission team from Pennsylvania will be arriving in about an hour or so. I slept the whole flight, so I was starving. I ate the Kit Kat that Janet gave me in my going away present. Once you have claimed your luggage, there is no place to eat or drink… Leah gave me a heads-up about a small lounge area that they have put in the airport. I admit that I am a little intimidated, only because I don’t speak any Spanish. I’m now wishing that I had taken that “Spanish for Dummies” book more seriously.

I’m scanning the crowd through the glass doors that separate the airport from the folks who are picking up their loved ones. There is not a familiar face in the crowd. I feel like a spectacle where I am right now. I’m sitting about 150 yards from about 250 people, who are staring intently through the glass for the faces of their loved ones.

In the lounge area is a picture of Antigua, where I will be heading tomorrow. The picturesque yellow arch with the clock and a volcano in the background makes me anxious to get this show on the road. On the walls on each side of me are woven rugs and table runners in the colors of red, brown, tan, gold, and blue. The designs are intricate. I really would love to learn how to weave. Representations of Jesus are everywhere, in them he is weeping under a crown of thorns.

Several mission teams, wearing matching shirts, cross my path. I question where they are going. They name villages that I have never heard that are about 3 hours away. I’m anxious to see the new intern house and to meet my future housemates.


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Goodbye 2009.  Welcome 2010.

I planned my departure from my job to be on the last day of the year for a reason… Start the new year fresh. Start the new year happy and energized. Start the year, which will soon be my 36th year on this planet, with a new perspective. Here’s the breakdown:

~ Pack, clean the commune, find a place for Hugo, and spend as much time with my beautiful niece (Kassidy) as possible before this Wednesday.

~ In 4 days, I will be heading to Asheville to see the rest of the family for two days (Auntie Dink is coming, Fia!!).

~ I will be going to take a weekend sabbatical to Savannah. I’m treating myself to a weekend in a B&B (something that I have always wanted to do). My plans are to sleep late, eat well, take a few tours, and just relax.

~ I will be heading toward my mom and dad’s place in Florida. Mom is apparently really excited about spending some one-on-one time with me.

~ Two weeks from today (14 days!!!!), I will be flying out of Miami and going to meet Tita and the Guatemalan family in Guatemala City. After I arrive, I will spend one night in Guatemala City and then I will take a shuttle to Antigua… where I will attend 4 weeks of immersion language school.

The big news this week is that we got the intern house in Tita’s neighborhood. The house has 4 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms. Another new member of the team will be in Antigua doing her own time in language school. I am looking forward to getting to know my new housemates.

Good things are happening my friends. Stay tuned.

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For as long as I could remember, I have had this goal/dream/coolness-in-my-head. I have ALWAYS wanted to move to a country where I didn’t know the language and be forced to adapt. I love languages.

During my time in Ukraine in 2006 and 2007, I began to understand the gist of what was going on around me. I didn’t speak any Ukrainian before I went, but I picked up some important words and phrases to help make my time there easier. In Ukraine, not only was there the language barrier, but there was also a ‘handicap’ of sorts. I worked at a camp for deaf Ukrainian children. Here is an example of any conversation in Ukrainian:

Me: Hey, what’s for lunch today?

English-speaking translator– translates into Ukrainian.

Ukrainian translator who signs — translates into Russian sign language to the child.

Child– answers Ukrainian translator who signs.

Ukrainian signer translates to Ukrainian.

Answer for original question is translated into English for me to know that we will be having some kind of fried meat (“What kind of meat is this? I don’t know, maybe pork.”), mashed potatoes and the best coleslaw that I have ever had. Now to some people, this would be an extremely frustrating way to have a conversation. I, however, love this interaction.

On January 16, 2010 my dream comes true. I will be moving to a country where I have no knowledge of the language. I can basically order a beer and extra cheese. I will be living with a family in Antigua that I have never met before, for four weeks. I get to go to a school that is specifically designed to teach me to survive in this environment. I couldn’t be more excited. I have always been a survivor and love people. I truly relish every minute that I get to hear the story of someone’s life… especially in a place that is so different from everything that I know. I am blessed.

I’ve never been one that loves a specific Bible verse… so this is a first for me. I looked this up after seeing it on a football game.

John 16:33–“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

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I’m Going To Guatemala!!

The waiting is over… kinda.

I had a productive meeting with Bill and Cherie this week. The good news is that I’m moving to Guatemala. I have always wanted to do humanitarian work… to be able to do this work in a third-world country is (literally) my dream come true. I feel so proud to say that I will be a part of the Lemonade International team.

There are going to be some delays in my departure from Raleigh…

~ I currently don’t have a place to live in Guatemala. We are working/researching/investigating some options in this. There is a slim chance that I will have to either rent an apartment or rent a room from someone for a period of time. I’m okay with this, as I am pretty adaptable to most living situation.

~ I still need to do some fund-raising. This isn’t really a point of stress to me right now. I have had so many people who have offered to help me out, either with a single donation, or by pledging monthly donations.

~ I still need to write my support letter. Not only do I have to do a mass email, but I have to send out letters to people who don’t have email access or who it’s easier to just write a letter to.

~ I have to find a home for Hugo, my cat. I’m worried about finding an appropriate home for him. He has a pretty bad case of separation anxiety.

More to come… in time.

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The Waiting Game…

I have gotten really good (insert sarcasm here) at waiting. spiral-clock

All of my application questions, criminal background check, and my video (yes… I said video!!) have been submitted to Bill and Cherie at LI. I’m happy to report that next Thursday we will be meeting for lunch to discuss what’s next.

I am calm.

For the first time, in a long time, I know that I’m doing the right thing… I’m being lead on this path to Guatemala. The coincidences are too strong and too many. I’m happy to say that I am ready for the challenges that lay ahead of me now. I’m on God’s time, which is dramatically different from Kerry-time. As someone who is very pro-active, its hard to wait around for someone else to make a decision about my future plans. I have confidence that this is all going to work out. I know that I’m doing good things with my life and that great things lay ahead.

I am calm.

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