So how do you prefer to say/write it–mission trip or missions trip? Me? I like the s. I think it encompasses having multiple missions on a single trip. Just kidding. That’s just how I’ve always said it, and I’m too old to change my ways.
Anyway. (I wonder how many second paragraphs of my blog posts consist of this one six-letter word that I use whenever my introductory sentence/paragraph gets long-winded, bunny-trailed, and/or nonsensical?)
Anyway (not to be confused with anyways).
Gabe and I took over 3,000 pictures on our trip to Cambodia. I know. And while you can rest assured that I won’t subject you to even 1/20th of those photos, I can’t imagine letting all of them languish away on Gabe’s external hard drive either. So, as time allows, I’ll do themed posts here and there with a few random ones thrown in for good Marla-measure.
Today’s picture post chronicles our entire journey FROM Columbus, Ohio TO Phnom Penh, Cambodia. 30+ hours of joy and excitement. (Actually, it wasn’t too bad at all.)
Our fearless team in the Columbus airport at 3ish pm on Wednesday, July 7. Front row: Lindy, Erin, Me, Kim. Back row: Doug, Gabe, Jason.
Our first stop was a little layover (and dinner–Auntie Anne’s pretzel!) in the Dallas/Fort Worth airport, but apparently we didn’t take any pictures. Hard to believe.
Here are Lindy and Erin working hard in the San Francisco airport making flashcards to help us learn the names of the kiddos in our orphanage. I was totally intimidated by the flashcards and never did use them; I just learned their names as I met them. Hard to imagine now not always knowing their names.
I don’t remember how long our layover was. Three hours? Four? Anyway, we had plenty of time for shots like this:
Taken by this clown:
The 12+ hour flight to Taipei, Taiwan wasn’t the most fun I’ve ever had, but I can’t complain. It reminded me so much of my flight from Alaska to Seoul, South Korea back in 1997 on my way to student teach in Okinawa, Japan.
Here’s me writing in my journal. Not sure if this is before or after my “night’s sleep.”
This is a shot of the little radar screen in front of us as we got ready to fly over Okinawa. I got so excited because I could actually see the Naha airport (where I landed 13 years ago) from the plane!
Here we are in the Taipei airport. None of our stomachs felt all that great by this point, and Lindy’s coffee that tasted just like GREASE didn’t help.
Here’s me (with bad gas) writing this blog post, thrilled to be having my picture taken.
This is the friend Gabe made when he got tired of taking pictures of us.
Meet Sam, a Cambodian man who married a French woman and has lived in France for 30 years. He was coming home to Cambodia for 5 months to visit family. He kept saying his English wasn’t very good, but since I knew about two words in French and zero in Khmer, we made it work.
Then finally! Phnom Penh! And that part of the trip (our arrival) is such a blur to me. Savong and Pisey, the orphanage directors were there. So was Savorn, the country director for Asia’s Hope, and his wife Sony.
And since the older kids were on vacation from school, they came along to help with our bags, give us beautiful wreaths of jasmine and shower us with hugs and smiles.
I love looking back on this picture now that I know all these beautiful people so personally. It’s cool to recognize someone from a photo, but I can’t wait to go back someday and see people I KNOW.
And there you have it. A really long journey that was 100% totally worth it. I’d travel a hundred hours straight to see those faces again.
So, tell me. Have you ever been on an overseas mission(s) trip? If not, do you feel God tugging on your heart to go? Where?