Today is Monday, July 27th. I have had people in my home since June 15th. I am almost caught up on the laundry (including the student center’s), my fridge almost looks like itself again, as well as my bathroom (thanks Danny and Jake) and we are once again settling into our ‘normal’ routine. As crazy (and dirty) as the last six weeks have been, it has also been my favorite time so far.
David enjoys the slow and steady, I like the crazy and busy. (Luckily we both like the planned and structured.) This summer has finally given me some of the crazy and busy, and it has helped me to see why I’ve had a little trouble adjusting here. Ukrainians aren’t so much for the crazy or the busy, especially during the summer. They are not so much for the planned or structured either, but we’ll save that for another entry.
After spending a nice week with David’s family, our Texas mission team from Lubbock arrived. (I apologize for my husband’s error in the previous post, I was not given a chance to proof it.) They arrived on time and were only missing two of their four bags. There were only two of them, but they had a serious amount of energy and passion and we hit the ground running (after a couple of days of rest).
We began in the Carpathians, a mountain range that stretches through western Ukraine into Romania, for a week long camp. The camp incorporated some English lessons by day and teachings about Jacob (from Genesis, not David’s brother) by night. We hiked in the mountains, picked wild strawberries, prayed, built a campfire, picked wild mushrooms, went swimming in the river, took cold showers, spent alone time with God, ate amazing food, sang worship songs, even made a trip to the hospital (everything turned out fine).
We had a couple of our ‘regulars’ from Pilgrims invite friends to the camp, and they enjoyed it. Some of our newer Pilgrims really were able to connect with some of our older folks and David and I were able to watch not only friendships between people deepen, but even more so some of the students’ relationships with Christ. It was a great week.
I’m still not sure how this came up, but Kristin, one of the TX girls, said to me, “You know that game/ice breaker, ‘If you were stranded on a desert island what three things would you take with you?'” I said, “Yes.” She said, “Now I know what I would take.” I said, “What?” And she said, “I would only need two, a Ukrainian man and a Ukrainian female.” That became a running joke for the rest of the trip. Both Kristin and Kristi were floored by how much our students knew and could do in the country. If Ukrainians know how to live in the city, they really know how to live in the country.