It was a busy two weeks topside.
I had a pretty full schedule with Sunday Pulpit talks, 2 high school classroom talks, a large PW (Presbyterian Women) Spring Gathering presentation, a couple of church Mission and Social Justice committee visits, a bible study group which they had expanded to a lunch for several different area church people to attend… a Compañeros meeting, a Social Ministries Task Force Meeting and a couple of meetings with individuals who support the mission in Berlin and a visit with the director of Habitat for Humanity who has begun work in the department of Usulután (OUR area!!). They will be building in Santiago de Maria sometime this year. I’m hoping I can convince them – and their Salvadoran counterparts – to investigate the Berlin area. Most of these were scheduled activities. A few were last minute visits that just happened to work out via connections made from some of the talks (like the Habitat meeting).
And in between I was able to spend a day helping my sister move into her new home, spend a little time with my mom, go to the Elton John concert (way cool) and visit some friends. One thing I did not get to do which makes me sad, is to attend my own Heartland Church service. But Mark sends me his sermons – a weak substitution, but better than nothing! I read it with his voice in my head.
My time went by very fast. Now I’m sitting in the Houston airport with 8 hours to fill so thought I would start with this blog.
I have such conflicting emotions right now – which is normal for me. I’m really sad to be leaving my family and friends (and running water that I can actually drink, smooth roads, real stores, no dust). But I’m also happy to be going back to the people I love in Berlin and getting back into the work. We have new things to think about – a possible new community/church partnership as well as a renewed partnership possibility … and then all the normal (?) on-going work. There have been several requests for updates, the beginnings of planning for upcoming delegations as well as the normal day to day communications and activities.
And it is always chaotic when I return from a trip. The Team and I spend lots of time catching up with what has been happening in my absence. There is usually some sort of issue that needs addressing that they want to share with me as well as lots of little (and big) solicitudes that have come in… events that need to be scheduled.
When I finally land in Berlin, I won’t have much time to be sad about what I left behind. Until it is time for lights out … then I’ll get weepy for a while. I’m lucky in that I’m usually so tired by the time lights out arrives that I hit the pillow already mostly asleep! It’s a blessing sometime.
I think I will search out a cup of coffee and some internet access … maybe catch up on some emails to make tomorrow a little less hectic. Some things will have to wait of course – since my information is in Berlin – but at least I could make a dent in some of the simple communications.
And man… I need to get my Spanish back on! It doesn’t take long for me to take for granted the ease of communication when I’m in the states.