Saturday, May 13, 2017

Missionaries on vacation...

Leaving for vacation...

Tete Commutes

Missionaries like us generally live in out-of-the-way places with little on offer in the area of leisure activities. While a Swede is happy to live for a month without running water and electricity at the lake in the summertime, most of us don't find this "mysig" (cozy and quaint) after years with power-cuts and dry spells. Considering that the hills surrounding our residence in Mozambique were littered with land mines during the war, we have been wary of hiking off the beaten track. It is safe now, but our routines were formed during the not-so-safe years after the ceasefire. We don't wander much.

Where to go?

This is often determined by the next scheduled mission meeting or mandatory travel to and from schools or courses. When we were expected to visit northern Mozambique once a year, we planned on a few extra days to visit our favorite beach spot. When the kids needed to be taken to boarding school, we scheduled a few extra days in Johannesburg where there are malls and movies and restaurants. This time there was a mandatory meeting in Cape Town right before our kids return to boarding school... so we planned 6 days of family time at an AirBnB near a beach at the foot of a lovely mountain on the peninsula. We don't complain! We visit AWESOME places! But we really don't choose where to go based on our interests and dreams. We DO find dreamy spots and become interested in each place we visit though!

When to go?

SIL Southern Africa meetings
Little Zebra Books meetings
As I've mentioned above... we go when it is convenient. Tagged on to other travel so we don't have added expense. The week after Easter isn't a real holiday time in South Africa, but that is our holiday time. We've just had 3 intense months of visits and travel and consultancy events. We've almost ignored our kids for weeks. NOW is the time for vacation! We are so thankful that we CAN schedule time with all three kids in Cape Town this year. In the past, only our youngest has come with us. Since our future assignment might be based here in this tip of Africa, we NEED to have time to check it out as a family. God has been so good to provide the opportunity!

Cool Runnings Bobsled in Cape Town
What to do?

Usually we look for cheap options. Just getting somewhere from where we live is expensive. So spending money on activities is minimal. At the beach, we are all easily entertained :). In South Africa, we have the 3 luxuries of civilization: McDonalds, Movies, Malls! Plus beaches in the Cape this time around! Then there are the necessary missionary vacation activities: buying underwear and shoes, scheduling dentists, haircuts, eye doctor visits, vaccinations...

So what did a day look like in this missionary vacation?

Breakfast in a sunny corner of the 1920's cottage garden across the railroad track from the beach.
Writing documents giving permission for travel or minors and having them notarized at the police station.
Making sure we have internet access on our cell phones so we don't get lost again without our Google Maps
Visiting the Penguins at Boulder Beach in Simon's Town
Visiting the Little Zebra office
Getting haircuts for two girls in desperate need of professional help
Scheduling surf lessons for boys who long for waves

Visits with dear old friends! 
Visiting the office where all our books pass through.

Surf lessons!

Find the kids... find the penguins...
Heading back to Mozambique 

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