Thursday was what we refer to as a "free" or "rest" day, when in reality it is neither free nor very restful. I've only had one free day to base that fact off of though...anyways, we had all had a fairly late night and slept in. I was the first one up, and I know this because there was a pounding noise around 1000 (that's 10:00 a.m. in military time). My first thought was that it was a bird, as some of the common birds around here are pretty large and could fight an average sized dog. When the noise continued, my second thought was that it was one of the officers and that I had better get myself out of bed and answer the door. But once I opened the door I finally realized that it was Derek, and that our international friend from college had come to visit! She stayed over for about an hour, and we all talked and traded a few stories, all the while drinking the chai that she made. Side note: if you drink tea that's not at least half milk, the Kenyans believe you are sick and might as if you have a cold. Apparently, that's the only time they don't load up their tea with milk. I don't like tea, but I am growing quite partial to chai. So, she ended up leaving before the rest of our team woke up, and we walked her to the gate and said goodbye.
We noticed that the guard's very cute daughter was watching us, and spent time trying to bond with her and talking to her father. Nate ended up passing us, and we headed back to the house, where finally a few of my female teammates had woken up. We all chilled around the house for a few more hours, playing cards and bursting out into random songs, two of our favorite ways to pass time. Eventually we did devotionals and then took a break. Yes, a break - I myself tried to take a nap. Then at 1500 (3:00 p.m.) we reunited and worked on our Spoken Word, which is like a spoken interpretation of the Bible, with Ashley's added flair of interpretive dance.
The Lt. Colonels Howards are stationed here and live about 100 feet away from our house. They had graciously invited us over for dinner, and also to use internet (thanks so much!). When I headed over the computers were taken, so I watched a few minutes of football (that's soccer for you non-European hooligans). The World Cup is going on, and it's being hosted by South Africa, so it's a BIG DEAL! Soon, the rest of my team arrived and the Howards served us tea and salad, and then spaghetti for the main course. It was delicious and comfortingly reminded us all of home. We spent a lot of time talking about everything, from skiing to London, and then for dessert we were served orange creamsicle floats! Could it get any better? Finally, finally we all finished with researching videos to use as skits and got this blog up and running, and headed back. We finished up the night by perfecting our Spoken Word and listening to the sermon that Nate wrote out for the Sunday service. It is fantastic, by the way.
We finished the day with our usual breakdown and prayer.
A few added personal thoughts-
-We live, cry, laugh, pray, act, work, eat, clean up, sing, do everything as a team, and our bond only grows stronger.
-I can see that all of us are benefitting immensely by being surrounded by striving Christian peers. A day hasn't gone by that we don't teach each other something meaningful.
-I can only hope that we might bless those around us now as much as they've blessed us, whether it's from inviting us to a delicious prepared meal or simply offering a smile.
-The Kenyan way of worship, which tends to be high-energy, fun, and inspiring, definitely speaks to my soul and I can't get enough of it.
-Unexpectedly, the weather is cool and cloudy, there are few mosquitoes in Nairobi, and the food hasn't bothered us once.
I will end by saying that all of us could write pages and pages about a single day, though you probably think our posts are quite long enough. Thanks to all of you who are reading, praying, and otherwise supporting us. God is good.
Peace and love!