Conntecting the Dots

Romania, Here We Come!

River of Life care home for abused women and children

River of Life care home for abused women and children

Journal Entry for Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Residents and staff at River of Life

Residents and staff at River of Life

After a planning meeting with Barb and the woman who will be my translator at the upcoming women’s conference, we ate a lovely lunch of chicken cordon bleu, corn, potatoes, and salads. Frankly, I think the Europeans have it right – they eat their big meal midday rather than in the evening. It’s gotta be healthier than eating a heavy meal only four hours before going to bed. I’m very tempted to incorporate this cultural difference into our lifestyle at home.

Then began the journey. Once again we squished into a car and headed down the road, this time bound for Romania. Our driver, IM missionary Terry Mayberry, chose a scenic route, and it was lovely. We wound through farmlands and little villages, over countless train tracks, and past old factories. We stopped at a large and modern grocery store to find rice cakes, and there we discovered a food court where we could buy supper. Gene and I chose Chinese food.

We assumed the food would be served hot. After all, it was sitting in stainless steel heating dishes that looked just like the ones used in buffet-style restaurants here. We were wrong. The store employer put our rice and mixed veggies in Styrofoam take-out containers and handed them to us. We paid and returned to the car, only to discover that our supper was stone-cold. That was an aha moment for us – in retrospect, there was no heater or flame under the dishes. I guess we were supposed to ask her to heat the food in the microwave that was on a shelf behind her. Live and learn.

Throughout this trip, we relied on a GPS to tell us where to go. When she directed us onto a back road that cut through farmers’ fields and demanded that our driver dodge major potholes – in the dark – I couldn’t help but laugh at our adventure. What a day! What a journey! Oh my, where’s a bed?

We reached our destination about nine hours after our journey began. This was the River of Life project – a care home for abused women and children. Gene and I stayed here last March; returning now was like coming home. I fell asleep filled with a sense of excitement at the prospect of seeing the same Romanian women we’d met here last year.

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