It's Cheryl! One of 5 members on the Belmont Mission trip in Capetown, South Africa. The plane has landed!!...along with all of our luggage. (wooh!) Let me just begin with thanking everyone for your support, whether it be financially, thoughtfully, or prayerfully. Thank you! This, I am sure, will be an experience that will wreck all 5 of us (for the better!). Again, thank you!
What a day it has been. We are now at The Team House where it is 1:15AM and 7:15PM back in Nashville. Traveling was as best as it could be. There were no conflicts with any of our flights...except that maybe my leg fell asleep during one of my many naps on the plane. Our longest flight today was roughly 16-18 hours and was broken up into 2 take-offs/landings. Our South African Airbus 600 stopped for an hour in Senegal to refuel so we could take on another 7 hours to Johannesburg. If you're like me, I don't know much about Senegal. From what I saw, there were many buildings/houses in the shapes of rectangles with square windows. Mostly the colors of white and burnt orange, and the town pretty bare. But beautiful in its own unique form.
Although this is not my first international flight experience (Belmont Study Abroad to Hong Kong, July '08), while up in the air I was reminded of how big the earth really is! I looked at the Flight Map and it's just a straight yellow line from Washington DC to Senegal to Johannesburg. As humans, we are so small! Of course, the view out of the airplane always overwhelms me with Gods creation of sunshine, clouds, and stars. I want to travel the world, singing, serving, and loving people from all different walks of life. I can thank Belmont for encouraging me to think globally rather than just locally.
As I was waiting in line on the plane today, I noticed a man in his 30s jamming to Michael Jackson's album, Thriller. I caught eye contact with him sitting in his yellow jumpsuit and shiny golden hat, and we shared a few head-nods to honor the late Michael Jackson's music. Pretty classic.
To pick us up from the Capetown Airport was our Team House Manager, Clinton, a warm and welcoming 23-year old South African native. He drives us to our final destination, on what is known as the opposite side of the road for us USA natives, the left side. It being night time, I could not get used to cars coming around curves of the mountains on our right and made me a little nervous just the first 15 cars or so.
The Team House is beautiful and I can not really believe we are here. I've only dreamed of seeing parts of the world like today. We got out of the van to the thick smell of the ocean and the sounds of crashing waves. We are not roughing it by any means. However, we are sharing the house with 22 Texans until Tuesday afternoon.
Off to a wonderful night of rest, where I will wake up on the top bunk to a skyline view of South Africa's ocean and mountains. Then, to King of Kings Church. Continue to pray for the Belmont Team: Christy, Tim, Lindsey, Noah, and myself. I am more blessed and more excited than I could simply convey through typed words. Good night Belmont!