All good things come to an end.
It’s been an emotional few weeks as we’ve dealt with a child who is deeply unhappy at school, and realizing that our time as a family needs to come to a close in Burundi for educational reasons. We’d planned to leave in 2019, twenty years after I initially came out, but have brought it forward by a year.
The plan is, with my GLO Board’s full endorsement, to take the family on a crazy year traveling around the world. What an amazing opportunity! Why do it? Well why not?! We’ve had a stressful, challenging, full-on season in Burundi, and so this year will be one of decompression and collecting family memories as we transition back to the West. And I am a firm believer that education is so much more than just what goes on in the classroom, so we will be attempting to home-school along the way.
It will not be pure self-indulgence, I assure you, because I will speak wherever opportunities arise in whichever context, flying the GLO/Burundi flag to raise awareness, prayer and financial support. A lot of my work for GLO is networking/fundraising/connecting, and that can be done remotely as well as face-to-face. It is also an opportunity for more writing. All that to say I won’t be slacking by any stretch! I’m not good at that.
So here’s where you come in:
I just put a quick notice on Facebook, and within minutes have had invitations to come to Romania and Peru. The canvas is completely blank, we are open to anything. I’m certainly not planning on having speaking engagements the whole time – that’d ruin the experience for the others – but I am keen to be used in some of the places we end up. We are limited financially, obviously, so will be preparing a route based on contacts where we can sleep on their floors/they have a spare room or two, to minimize costs. And we’re in no way aiming to cover all continents, we’d plan on sometimes spending a week or two in a given location for some sense of stability and non-travel to mitigate for what could end up being an overly-frenetic schedule.
We are looking for a mixture of developed and developing countries. For fruitful GLO stuff, we need (and want) to go to Australia, New Zealand, the USA and Canada. Please, any contacts who are kind/hospitable/open to receiving us/potential avenues to speak like churches or schools, do connect us. I mean any! The more options we have, the better. Any access to a vehicle to borrow too would be wonderful. If we run out of money early, we’d just have to head home, so where we can save costs, we need to.
I’d like to spend September/October in Eastern Europe off the beaten track, so the FB message above about speaking at a missions school in Romania is perfect. Any contacts anywhere throughout the whole of Europe please, we’d love them! Does anyone know anyone who has a campervan that we might be able to use during that time when schools are back in session?
In terms of the developing world, it’s totally up for grabs. Suggestions/contacts please! It might end up being the case that where we have more contacts we will go, but one definite is India (and Nepal). Lizzie was born there (and worked there), and it’s obviously an amazing nation. Please send me your India contacts (we have enough Nepal ones).
We got the kids to write down their preferences. Canada was number one, and Israel came up a few times, so we’ll go to the latter, with Lebanon and Jordan nearby too. Contacts please! And being so close to Egypt, we’d probably jump on a bus as I did a few decades ago down from Jerusalem to Cairo to bargain for marijuana at the pyramids (but that was the old me!!). Other than Egypt, I don’t think we’ll go anywhere else in Africa as we’ve been on this continent and want to expose the kids to other parts of the world.
So can you help? Could you rack your brains on our behalf? What would you do in our shoes? As I said, it’s a blank canvas and we’re inviting you to help us fill it, and share any tips/warnings in the process.
Thanks a lot! As one adventure comes to an end, another will begin…