05 November 2006

A surreal day.

Yesterday I was washing my hair in a well at an orphanage in Uganda while the children watched in curiosity, and today I have just sunbathed on the shores of Lake Victoria at a five star beach resort. The contrasts of this week have been confusing and surreal to say the least. Last night after a very tearful goodbye to the orphans at Mercy Home of Children in Kajjansi, Uganda, all 9 of us on our team went to the airport in Entebbe to return back home via Amsterdam. Thirty minutes before departure, they delayed our flight because all the lights on the runway had gone out (Don't they have replacement bulbs?? And do they really ALL go out at the same time?). After sleeping on the floor of the airport for a few hours, any "innocence" we had gained by staying at the orphanage for 4 days had quickly left us, unfortunately, and we were cranky. We found out our flight was totally cancelled and groggily entered the complimentary shuttle to take us to our hotel for the night. Little did we know we'd end up staying at the Imperial Resort Beach Hotel on the shores of Lake Victoria! While we were so thankful for the accommodations, we were not sure what to think about the situation since it was such a contrast from the places we have been this week with the poorest of the poor. I admit it's been a very relaxing time that was much needed. I just wish we could have stayed one more night at the orphanage if we had known about our flight.

I can't wait to write more, but for now I'll say I've experienced so much joy this week that my face actually hurt from smiling! I want to adopt Margret Harriet from Mercy Home and tears fill my eyes every time I think of gripping Margret's hand out the window of our van as we left the orphanage. I didn't expect to love Africa this much or want to stay so badly or continue to hear the children's songs echoing in my head. This morning when I awoke at the hotel, I read the card Margret wrote me that said, "How are you? I hope you are doing fine. Me I am not fine because I am missing you." The tears came again. Uganda is an unbelievably beautiful country and it seems like weeks ago that we were in Kenya. So many photos and experiences to share with you! Until then I'll go back down to the beach and enjoy the last few hours of my surreal Uganda one day "vacation" before we head to Amsterdam tonight and try all of this over again! If you read this today, please pray for us to get back to the U.S. on Monday! I love you all from Africa!

3 comments:

Lauren said...

Love you too, Stine. I love & admire your big, fat, beating-out-of-your-chest-with-compassion heart...and I can't wait to hear all of the amazing stories you have to share from your time in Uganda. May God guide you home in safety and peace. Bear hugs, Lauren

Ange said...

Love you so much Chonie. I've been thinking about and praying for you. I cannot wait to hear about everything.

xoxoxoxo,

Ange

Stephanie said...

My favorite is #38. Gorgeous photos!