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Saturday, August 10, 2013

Reflecting on Breaks

Graduation day was Saturday the 13th of July.  The last of the students headed home that afternoon. The constant buzz of activity and noise left with them.  Many staff members going on home assignment or leaving RVA for good left in the days & weeks following.  By the last week in July, our neighborhood was like a ghost town.  It’s particularly quiet during this, the longest “vac” each year- that is until new staff make their way here mid-August and students return at the end of the month.  Even staff who are staying on the field for the entire break seem to leave.  This place really seems deserted. 

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It wasn’t until our second vac in April that I realized why it’s like that here and why it’s actually needed.  There are no shortages of posts and Facebook status updates from us detailing just how busy and fast-paced each of our terms are.  And then comes vac. 

We reconnect as a family and do fun things together.  We watch movies and TV series that we just don’t have time for during term.  We go away.  That’s it!  We go away.  That’s why this place is deserted during breaks.  There simply isn’t time to leave for an overnight during term.  Not only are the school days full, but the weekends are too. And though it’s extremely rewarding work, it gets exhausting!  Even this homebody feels the need to leave after 13 weeks in! 

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Fortunately we live in a beautiful country with plenty of areas to escape to.  Kenya has 5 major national parks, many other smaller parks, and a beautiful coastline.  I’m sure that it offers even more than that.  What an immense blessing to be able to escape as a family and retreat.  (It certainly helps that we are residents of Kenya, and as such receive incredible discounts on fees.)

We were blown away by the beauty of Kenya’s coast this vac.  We stayed with two other RVA families at a house in Ukunda, on Kenya’s southern most beaches. 

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DSC_0575Michael, Corey, and Dan ready to snorkel.

DSC_0722   Courtney, Tiff, and Jill

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Driving there was a complete adventure to say the least.  Vehicles in Kenya break down, frequently, and most often when trying to go on vacation.  Our friend’s vehicle did just that.  Evelyn got car sick for the first time in her life.  We drove through intense fog that left us with zero visibility.  And GPS devices don’t always work in third world countries.  But we made it, we enjoyed it, and it was worth it. 

We were able to rest, enjoy this beautiful land God created, spend time together as a family and fellowship with good friends.  The return trip lacked the adventure and craziness that plagued characterized the trip east.  We were thrilled to be home Friday evening, even to a cold and windy Kijabe. 

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As always, thanks for reading!!

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