Hello! Sorry for the long hiatus in blogging. Moving overseas has been an all-encompassing event. I am so grateful to be back online with internet, which is a life-line of communication in a new place that feels very, very far away.
Our belongings in Virginia were carefully divided into “storage” and “ship” piles. Feeling a bit displaced in our own home, we watched as our life in boxes was loaded into crates on moving trucks. Ready or not, may the adventures begin!
Our evening arrival to O.R. Tambo airport (named for a former President) in Johannesburg made it too late to cross the border from South Africa into Swaziland before the checkpoint closed. We didn’t mind having to spend the night at the airport hotel after a 22-hour travel day with our sweet toddler. We were all jet-lagged and weary, but we made it!
We were slightly confused upon check-in at the hotel. It seemed they were offering us a kitty cat to borrow for the night for the baby, until we realized a “kiddie cot, ” was a crib, which came with its own tiny, fluffy duvet and high-thread count Egyptian cotton sheets. I’ll take a kiddie cot, too, please.
The next day, we had a hearty breakfast and set out on the path to our new city, Mbabane. However, getting out of the airport parking lot was a challenge. Our car was towing a small trailer, and the car made it under the exit barrier, but the trailer did NOT, so my husband and our driver unhooked the trailer and pulled it by hand out of the parking garage. Whew! The four-hour drive was beautiful. Our mountainous new home seemed to welcome us with warm, sunny skies and stunning views.
A few of the first impressions of Africa:
the hand-woven doll ornaments on Christmas trees at the airport
the kindness that radiates from South African smiles
lavender-hued Jacaranda trees
deep red earth
houses with corrugated tin roofs
laundry hanging out to dry
the large number of hitchhikers on the road
huge, open blonde fields dotted with clusters of trees
a hazy, diffused pinkish-yellow light on the horizon
lantern-like bird nests with openings at the bottom