Thursday, July 22, 2010

How long does it take you to go to Rwanda?

People often ask me this question when they find out about my trip.  Here is my account of this year's trip.  

A friend from our church dropped us off at the airport at 8:45 p.m on July 19th.  We had four big bags to check in and two carry on.  Guess what? We had to pay 30 dollars for each bag. OUCH!  We passed the security checkpoint without too much trouble, and got on the red eye flight to DC.

We arrived at DC at six in the morning on July 20th, and claimed bags, hauled them to an Ethiopia Airline counter, check them in again. As soon as we were done with check-in, our older son who lives in DC showed up to say goodbye to us.  We saw a USO lounge right next to the Ethiopian counter, so we walked in.  A pleasant volunteer welcomed us in and we spent two hours in a comfortable lounge.  Just before we left the USO lounge, Chris went out to look for Tabitha who is going to Rwanda with us.  But he didn’t find Tabitha in the check-in area. I was beginning to worry about her.  At that moment, Tabitha called us, and is already at the gate.   We left DC at 10:30 am.

We had a lay over in Rome, after 10 hours of flight; we stayed inside the plane for almost two hours.  Then there was another 6 hours to flight to Addis Ababa. I tried to sleep, but I was coming down with cold of something.  I had a really bad headache.  We arrived at Addis Ababa in the early morning, waited another 4 hours to get on an airplane.  I think this was the hardest trip of all eleven trips that I made to Rwanda. We finally arrived in Kigali around 2 p.m on July 21st.  Our dear friends, Paul, David, and Frank, came to meet us at the airport.  Then we drove three hours to Butare.  So I was on the road over forty hours.  I left home at 10:30 p.m on July 19th and arrived in Butare at 2 p.m on July 21st.  My head still hurts, so I am not going to do the math at this time.