Hello from the other side!
As of last Thursday (July 20), I now call the Africa Mercy my home! After the last five weeks of my time in Texas was spent in Mercy Ships Onboarding training – it all came so quick. The last week I found myself tying up phone contracts, dropping some insurances/attaining others, saying goodbye to friends, packing, and just about what seemed like everything else possible. I barely had any time to mentally process the fact that I was moving the place I’ve called home for the last twelve years to go live on a ship in Africa. To be honest, I still haven’t fully comprehended it.
The 26-ish hour travel here went smoothly for the most part and seemed a lot quicker than I was anticipating. We missed our connection in Madrid, but the airport was super helpful and managed to move us to another flight four hours later before we even hit the ground in Spain. The fact that they were able to do that for 35 people was quite impressive. Before I knew it – we had arrived in Las Palmas, Gran Canaria.
I’m not sure I’ll ever forget the moment we first pulled up to the Africa Mercy. After being with Mercy Ships for so long and never really being on any of our ships, it was a special experience. Seeing all of the places inside, as well, after seeing so many pictures and hearing so many stories was just a little surreal. Over the next several weeks during shipyard (where she is being serviced in a multitude of ways) I plan to continue to acquainting myself more and more before sailing to Central Africa soon.
My cabin is not much more than a large walk-in closet. Although, just imagine living in that closet. Then add a bathroom. Oh, and three other people! That space (or lack there of) will take some getting used to, but I did live in my car for five months once though, so I’m sure I’ll get the hang of it pretty quick. I’ve only had temporary roommates thus far and starting tomorrow I will have none. So, there is a small chance that I may make the sail alone and meet my future roommates in Cameroon. We shall see…
Training for my job as a Photographer has started this week and I even got my first Resource Request (photo request) today! So, I’m excited to get shooting. You’ll never guess what I get to capture first. Wait for it…. a pump! Yep, starting things out real rivetting. I guess I’ll have to wait for Africa before we get any patients on this here vessel of ours – who knew?!
Anyways, I’m doing great and am really thinking I’m going to love this ship-life thing. Thank you to everyone who has been praying and has supported me so far! I’m pleased to say that I am roughly 85% funded!! God is good.
Bless y’all and thanks for being a part of this journey.