Where things just don't go as planned. Today was one of them.
I woke up early. That wasn't planned, and usually it wouldn't be a bummer, except it was REALLY early, and I am really tired, and I had a very difficult time sleeping last night.
Skype wasn't working for a pre-planned phone call. I was bummed. I have Internet, which I know is a blessing, but sometimes there just isn't enough bandwidth to go around. I wonder who else is up at 5 am on the Internet?
Uploaded all the interns photos to burn disks for them and the home office. I noticed my external hard drive, that has EVERYTHING on it, isn't working correctly. Everything folks...means everything...photos, stories, newsletters, financial records...everything. I don't have time to fix it because of my hair appointment. Plus I wouldn't really know where to begin.
Short hair requires more frequent trims, I should have considered that when I cut it! Anyhow, I was on my way to the salon and the oil light came on. Odd, I checked it last week, and there was plenty! Anyhow, I was right in front of a gas station, pulled over, stopped the car and put in some oil. Turned on the engine, and to my horror I experienced shaking similar to the earthquakes a few weeks ago, and clanging similar to a class of toddlers beating on metal drums. I immediately turned off the engine and called Scott, team leader, aka father-like figure to all us single gals over here. He was without a vehicle. I called the mechanic, who surprisingly sent over two mechanics and had them look at the vehicle. They made the noises stop, but recommended I bring it in to the shop. I drove it the 2 kilometers to the shop and dropped it off. It was due for a service, so asked them to do that as well. I asked if I would have the car back by evening so that I could get the girls to the shuttle. They said, Pam, servicing only takes an hour, you'll have it back by lunch! SWEET!
Cancelled the hair appointment, I was so late at that point it didn't really require cancelling!
Called the girls who were in town with Donnie, pleading for a ride. Went to the house to help the girls finish packing. One of the girls was struggling, I found her on the floor, all her belonging strewn about, not knowing where to start. Half an hour later I noticed she was still there, no progress made...so I packed her bag for her.
All the while, trying to burn disks, but the hard drive isn't working correctly. Miraculously, after I had tried everything I could think of, it started working on its own.
Lunch. Oh yeah, we ate lunch. Tedi wanted to make a traditional Tanzanian meal for the girls since it was their last day. Dare I mention I failed to pick up the necessary ingredients... Tedi managed though, and was very gracious to me. This way though, the meal was truly traditional, in that we had to use what we had, and make a good meal.
I hadn't heard from the mechanic, so I called him, he said it was done and I should come by. I waited a few hours, there was PLENTY to do to get the girls ready and all their preps for home taken care of. So I hitched a ride to the garage, and asked for my keys and the bill. It was at this point that I learned, my car wasn't done, and it won't be done anytime soon. Yep folks, my engine is going to be taken apart and put back together. Something to do with shafts and other parts that I don't understand in English let alone Swahili! I asked how it happened, "Pam, you didn't have enough oil in your car, you have to put oil in your car!" I responded, "I know that, I have been driving years, and checked it last week, and the light was on for maybe 5 whole seconds!" AGH! So, my car, is at the garage, and maybe I will get it back in 2-3 err...this is Africa lets give them 4-5 weeks! I didn't ask how much it would set me back, but at dinner worked up the gumption to ask Scott. He laughed,"Pam you're looking at a couple thousand." UGH!
All this griping isn't for griping sake. Cause even as I look at the day, there are so many blessings that came about, even in the chaos. Getting up earlier than I expected, although I am tired, allowed for some extra God time, I apparently was gonna need it. Even though skype didn't work, I did get to IM, which is better than nothing. I did get to talk to Katie, and that was an encouragement. I was able to reschedule the hair cut, for Friday no less (it can sometimes take a month to get an appointment.) I got to spend extra time with the girls because my change of plans. I got to share one more day with them, speaking and sharing life and truth with them. I learned, that my Swahili is rockin! Can I boast a little here? I am really doing well with my Swahili! I translated for the girls as they said goodbye to Tedi, and I think I did it for the most part correct. Both parties understood and communicated, and I helped! That was exciting! Forgive the boasting, cause truly it isn't anything I have done, but what God did in me, and that is cool. I did get the DVDs of photos burned, and I did get my external hard drive working, although at the moment it isn't again. The next time it is working I have vowed to copy everything on it, although it is supposed to be my back-up. I guess I should have a back-up for the back-up. I am learning. I have another vehicle I can use in the interim of mine getting repaired, that is a blessing, as there is so much going on in Unga that to be with out a car would be difficult. And really, as frustrated as things came to be, God was there, the whole time, present in His fullness, giving great peace. That, my friends is worth the hassles. Today was so busy I might not have noticed his presence otherwise.