Friday, April 21, 2006

Last Africa-Side Update

Currently waiting in the lobby of the Holiday Inn - Pretoria. Getting ready to go to the Apartheid Museum, then a flight to Atlanta and finally CVG.

Here is a synopsis of our team - Construction 9:

Sean: a great block layer and a good guy. Quiet, but deep. He gets it. Glad that I met him.

Nancy: a go-getter. Doing the block-brigade was not her favorite thing -- but each and every time, she stepped up to the plate. I like the way she prays and I like how she is.

Deborah: a rubber-meets-the-road-person. We met in the lobby one morning and had a great conversation. She interruppted my journal writing at just the right time as it was focusing on the negative. A walking blessing.

Daryl: Good guy. Huge heart. He was there to serve and was a good reminder to me when stuff hit the fan. I like him and look forward to running into him at church.

Dana: a better friend and great conversationalist. I was glad that I was able to share the trip with her and for her listening skills and tactful pointedness. Every time I hear that one song that we all danced and looked at each other, I'll remember her funny face.

Raymond: our taxi driver. He was our South African sounding board. He answered our silly questions, gave us a little black South African perspective (both vocally and non-vocally) and served us well. I'll miss him.

Nancy M: wanted a house. Asked for my hat (and got it). For me she represents the people of the formal settlements. Needs some help, is willing to accept the help, is willing to wait, and holds no ill will.

I look forward to returning to Cincinnati, seeing my wife and kids, visiting friends and co-workers. Sharing the stories. Helping people get it. Retaining the views and emotions and lessons that I've had here. And basically becoming a better person and Useful Instrument.

Thanks to all those that have supported this effort - as I've thought about it, I've realized that it runs the gammet from financial, to spiritual, to logistical, to heartfelt and to friendly. I've been lucky to have traveled here.

I was wrong, it wasn't just another construction job. It is a renewed life and a fresh view.

Godspeed Travelers.

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