After six months of dreaming, planning, and working to make this expedition happen, it’s finally time for us to go to Kenya! We’re very excited (and a bit delirious at the moment from lack of sleep), but anxious to see our new school and meet the people in Bofu.
This last week leading up to our journey was absolutely crazy. Shopping, packing, checklists galore. Not only did we have to plan for our journey but also for the journey of our three children remaining at home for the next two weeks.
During those two weeks, they will be staying with both sets of grandparents, Monica’s sister, and several very close friends. That part of this experience has arguably been more stressful than our own plans. We really appreciate everyone who is helping us out – you’re making this trip possible for us.
Another stressful moment was when we waved goodbye to our two oldest children, Michelle and Michael, who traveled to Kenya two days before us with a youth expedition group.
Above is a picture of us waving to them as they proceed through security. They’re smiling ear to ear while we feel panic start to set in. 😉
As we walked back to our car, we asked ourselves “did we really just send our kids to Africa without us?”
That’s what parents do. We worry. But deep down we’re also excited that they get to have the adventure of traveling internationally without us. They loved it. We received word yesterday that they arrived in the Koins village safe and sound, and they’re already hard at work earning their keep and getting things ready for us.
The rest of the adult expedition left with us this morning. There’s about ten of us traveling together and we’re meeting up with a few more volunteers in Zurich. A handful more arrive the day after us, which makes for a group of about 15 adults, plus about a dozen more in the youth expedition group already there.
We’re getting to know the rest of our group and already having a good time. The best moment today was when Carol Guest passed through security in SLC … she had packed some “pop-its” (the simple 4th of July firework for little kids) in her carry-on. She was planning to use them in a school lesson on “the five senses”, as a hands on activity for the sense of hearing. TSA quickly detained her, they called the airport police, and after she tested positive for traces of gun powder, they took her to the “back room” for an additional private “pat down”. I guess she learned her lesson. 😉
Right now we’re sitting in Chicago O’Hare awaiting our next flight to Zurich. Then we head from Zurich to Nairobi, and then on to Mombasa where the Koins group will meet us. After a good night’s sleep and a morning in Mombasa, we’ll head to the village, find our kids, and begin our work. We’ll dive into the final touches on our school to get it ready for the grand opening next week!
We’re very grateful to everyone who has donated to make The Hidden Springs School in Bofu possible. Knowing that our family, friends, and neighbors support this cause makes the whole experience more meaningful. Stay tuned for more pictures!
Aaron & Monica