I am sitting here in the comfort of my home, reunited with my family, and fighting jet lag. The washing machine is going strong with all the laundry from our trip. After 37 hours of travel, we pulled into our driveway yesterday at 1:00 PM. I have been up since 3:30 AM this morning as my body adjusts back to CO time. (I have accomplished a lot in the 9 hours that I have been awake. My body is begging me to go back to sleep. I am trying so hard to push through).
As I am sure you have guessed by now, my internet access was very limited on our trip. So much so, that doing blog posts just didn't happen. Downloading pictures took so long, that I couldn't find a chunk of time long enough to really share what I wanted to.
So, I plan to take this week of recovery to write about each day of our trip. This was my 5th time to visit Swaziland. It truly was a phenomenal trip, and I am not even fully sure that I can put into words all the reasons why. I think one word that really stands out to me about this trip is "RELATIONSHIP." That is what this trip was about, the relationships we have been building over the last 7 years and the new ones that God has birthed through this trip. I have so much processing to do. For now, I will attempt to share with you some glimpses of what God did.
We arrived in Johannesburg, SA on Friday evening, October 11. We spent the night at a hotel and woke up the next morning to this view:
Talk about paradise. I was oohing and aahing over all the palm trees!!
We had a 5-ish hour drive from Johannesburg to Manzini, Swaziland ahead of us for the day.
At our bathroom stop on the way, we got to see some rhinos
and water buffaloes
This girl was ready for the adventure of her life
We made it through the South African and Swazi Borders without any issues. There is just something about going through that process that signals the beginning of our trip!
We ate lunch at Spur. Abby was cracking up at her smiley fries!
Chip was excited to get some Creme Soda...
...until he tasted it.
(It is very different than the U.S. Cream Soda. He said it tasted like perfume!)
Turns out this was our hottest day in Swaziland. We heard varying reports. The temperature was between 105-110 degrees. I always said I wanted to experience African heat. Well, now I have. It happened to be on a day when we were going to be outside.
Abby and me at the cultural center waiting for the show.
We did the hike to see the waterfall. It was beautiful, and did I mention it was hot?
Then, it was time for the show.
This was the 4th time I have been here, and I never get tired of it!
Abby even got called up to dance!
The view of a traditional homestead from outside
Our tour guide
I always learn something new.
Inside the grandmother's hut
We saw a group of monkeys on the way out
What better way to end the day than with some Nando's food and good friends?!?!
Thankfully, our guest house had a/c. I like the heat, but I also like sleeping at night. That is much easier when there is a/c.
Day 1 was a great way to start our trip. We were able to familiarize the team with some glimpses of Swaziland and get ready for the week ahead.