I left home on Monday the 27th of June. The two connecting flights from North Carolina then Atlanta to Los Angeles were delayed and caused me to miss my important flight across the Pacific to Sydney. So, I found out I’d have to spend a day in LA and leave the next evening, arriving in Sydney a day late. Airline was very helpful and covered the hotel cost and provided me with food vouchers. I spent the night in a very soft, comfortable, and safe room in Los Angeles. I went on a bus tour of the city the next day to see beautiful California. It was cooler than what I imagined, but very nice. I put my feet in the Pacific ocean, and wandered past the Chinese Theatre, along the “star-studded” sidewalks and saw a few other main points of interest in Hollywood. Again there were delays leaving LA, but no problems landing in Sydney Thursday morning. With the time/day change I left LA on the Tuesday night, but landed in Australia Thursday morning. I “lost” a day of my life! 😉 I’ll get it back when I go back east next time…
There was a memorable moment when on the flight into LA a guy proposed to his girlfriend over the PA system on the plane as we got near to California. The entire cabin of passengers cheered when she said “yes”. I would have died of embarrassment if I were her. Note to guys: don’t propose in a plane! It was sweet, but rather unromantic. 🙂
I didn’t have problems with jet-lag (that I know of) and I didn’t sleep much on the 15+ hour flight, but managed to stay awake till late Thursday, and slept through the night.
Everyone is welcoming and gracious. I met the staff and students, and saw a bit of the suburb area the next few days. I’m staying in the home of Pastor C. They’ve welcomed me and helped me become familiar with the area and the street systems that I’ll be living and teaching in. Some of the grandchildren are here this week while on school holidays (winter vacation between terms) so we took an afternoon and went to the city. 🙂 I’m a fan of the Sydney Harbor Bridge. Very beautiful. The Opera House is the other huge landmark, and it is beautiful and amazing in architecture, but I really like the bridge.
We had a great day, and the rest of the week was taken in running errands, familiarizing myself with church and school policies, connecting with with an orthodontist, setting up insurance, and finding out curriculum details for the upcoming term. School will start back in a few weeks on the 25th. Please pray that the transition will go well for staff and students, and for J. as she leaves to go back to the states. She has been such a blessing to me in helping me understand the ropes and take over for her in the classroom. I’m thankful for the way she has paved the way for me to come in and replace her in the school. Though I do feel bad that she is leaving, I’m excited about the new opportunities for me to have and minister. Please pray that the Lord would guide Jessica in the way she is to go as she returns to the states.
Coming up tomorrow (by the time most of you get this, it will have already started) we are having a Holiday Kids Club at the church. Everything is finished, and the church and school areas have been transformed into an incredible jungle of a week on “Adventure Island”. Please pray that souls will be reached through this ministry. Some members of a team from my university are here and helping as well. We are looking forward to meeting kids and making connections in the neighborhood.
Looking back a few weeks ago, I was packing up all my stuff and storing it in my parent’s attic. I’ve come to realize how easy it is for us to collect stuff, but not really use it. I’ve purged some, but not as much as I need to.
I’m excited about reaching out and learning the culture and getting to know my students. I hope to be a blessing, and if my students learn to learn this year, I’ll be satisfied. I am so proud of the students I had this year, they are upcoming 3rd graders and they taught me a lot, and I they learned a lot about life.
Please let me know how I can pray for you, pictures will come soon.
Love in Christ, Beth:)