Bonjour from Burkina!

Eight women, 16 pieces of checked luggage and a variety of carry-ons all made it to Burkina Faso, Africa.  Woot, woot! 

Where do I begin?  Let's begin from when I awoke on Thursday morning, October 2nd.  I jumped rolled out of bed and nervously completed packing for my trip.  My husband and all the kids drove me to church to meet the team and do passport checks and grab all 16 pieces of luggage that we had packed the night before.  Then we drove a half hour to the airport only to find out upon arrival that our flight that was supposed to leave @ 11:10am was delayed until 3:00pm!  So, the only option was to drive many hours to Chicago, IL to catch a non-stop flight from Chicago to Brussels, Belgium that would allow us to connect with our final flight into Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, Africa.  (I know Ouagadougou looks challenging to say and I did not do a very good job the first few times I tried it on my tongue.  It sounds like Wahgadoogoo)

 
After 26 hours of traveling, I arrived in the capital city of Burkina Faso, weary of airline food and the small space of seat 19H that was my home for the last 6 hours of the journey.

Ouagadougou from the air.

 
Upon arrival the team and I filled out our customs paperwork, met John, the wonderful missionary host, gathered all our luggage and went into the parking lot to find our transportation.  I arrived wearing jeans, a t-shirt and fleece jacket and soon regretted my attire in the 90 degree weather.
 
Unfortunately, my photos of the first day are sparse.  We are not to take pictures of any government building or personnel.  We should not even take photos of the people unless we ask permission.  Why, you might ask?  Well, some in Burkina Faso practice Animism.  I am not real knowledgeable about this only in the fact that they believe a camera can steal their soul or put a curse on them by having their photos taken.  So, before honing my secret spy skills in taking covert photos.... I just couldn't get many.
 
We made it to the guest house, got settled and ate dinner with John and Betty.  Enjoyed some good conversation and met to discuss our plans for the next couple of days.  After that, we all went to bed and slept like logs!  It was sooo good to stretch out in an actual bed.  Love the simple things.
 
On Saturday we enjoyed a market day with a few vendors who came to us!  Wonderful gentlemen and wonderful items.  It was a great opportunity to practice my French and I was pleased that I picked up a lot more than I thought I would.
 
Benjamin

I don't remember his name, but he is disabled and gets around on a special bike.  He makes a living selling the items you see in front of him.

Beautiful baskets!  I may have purchased one or two! :)
 
Today we enjoyed worshipping at Central Alliance Church in Ouagadougou.  We found out that we were a part of celebrating 10 years of Compassion at Central Alliance.  Many stories and photos of Compassion children then and now.  So wonderful.  Then, this evening we at dinner with the women of Central Alliance and were able to get to know many of them.  Their hospitality was wonderful and I'm looking forward to doing a retreat for them later in the week.
 
Every morning when I wake I can hear a rooster crowing and a goat bleating.  The sun is pretty high in the sky by 6:00am.  The temperature is always hot, in the mid-nineties and the sun has shown every day so far.
 
There is so much more I could write and just can't seem to find the words to describe the sights, sounds and smells of the area.  I've been journaling my adventure and hope to put more thoughts in order for you soon.  If not now, then when I return and have time to sit and process things.  Internet is kinda sketchy and I have no idea when I'll be able to post more.  I do know that I have been stretched already and have so much more to learn.  We are heading to Dorcas House tomorrow morning and will have no internet for the next few days.
 
Thank you all for thinking of me and praying for me.  Your prayers are comforting me and allowing me to be strong when I am weak!!  Until next time, Au Revoir.

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