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Tuesday, January 01, 2013


This term comes from Karen Masso, who at times just did NOT want to move again on a break.  Missionary life involves just too many transitions, too many rough roads and expensive flights and buggy beds, that the idea of staying HOME on a vacation appealed to her.  I personally like to be in motion, exploring, away from the accessibility of needs and calls, and finding new adventures.  However at Kijabe we live in the nicest house we ever have.  We have a fireplace, a Christmas tree with lights, a pizza oven and a grill, and beds for all.  We have access to woods and views.  We have half our kids coming specifically to BE HOME.  And we had, this year, a kid with an injury on crutches and in pain who needed recovery time rather than the planned wilderness camping.  So we canceled our four-day three-night game park outing with other families, and stayed home.  A STAYcation.

Which would have been lovely most Decembers, but this year Kenya is experiencing record rains.  Daily.  Nightly.  The sun has been a rarely sighted memory.  Thick clouds weigh down on us.  Occasionally there would be enough light to cast a shadow, but soon the rain would pound in again.  Dozens of people have actually died in flooding, and hundreds have been displaced, so this deluge is more than an inconvenience.

We are safely perched in a sturdy house, so for us the enforced inactivity of a nearly ligament-free knee and the dreary confinement of rain has meant nearly constant fires crackling. LOTS of cooking.  Lots of dishes.  A day spent on motorcycle maintenance while the non-mechinca's sipped chai on the porch.  A day playing a massive game of risk, table pulled up to the fireplace, snacks and chance and strategy and protest and laughter.  Kindle books.  The Batman series of movies.  Premier League football matches.  More food.  A day driving out to Malewa (our only few hours out of the house this week) to visit the Congdons in their impressive new home.  Good coffee, actually really excellent coffee.  Our spastic tree aways blinking in the background.  Occasional visitors.  A few work-related phone calls.  Watching an URBANA talk on youtube.  Phone calls to grandparents.

I'm not sure how often we'll ever do a staycation.  Kijabe makes it much easier than Bundibugyo, but I still miss the motion aspect.  I do think this has been a restful stretch; the sheer exhaustion of Caleb's injury drained us emotionally in unexpected ways.  In all the sorrow I AM thankful for hours spent together, unrushed, still, a rarity in our life.  

And so 2012 drew to a close with silly hats and blowing horns and toasts and a party-popper, all four kids here, basking.  For that I am thankful.

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