The last full day in Ukraine for the excursion we went to the park again. One of the little kids, Yura, started talking to me in Ukrainian and I wasn’t really understanding what he was saying so I said “what does it mean?!” He started mimicking me and is repeatedly saying “what does it mean?!” In a funny voice. He eventually goes up to Greg, who is a volunteer that can translate between English and Ukrainian, and asks “what does what does it mean mean?” So Greg tells him, but he doesn’t believe us at first because it was just very ironic. But eventually believes us and just starts shouting it.
Later that night the camp had a party because it was the last night there. We had lots of fellowship and lots of memories made that night. The kids sang the English songs we had taught them over the two weeks, Greg sang a song also, and all of the kids and staff got to sing “As the Deer” here. We also made potatoes that night, but not like you normally would, we actually put 4 or 5 cut up and then wrapped in tinfoil into the fire we had going in the bed of coals. There were about 100 potato packages. And then after they were all cook, we put them on the very long table that had been brought outside. We all ate, drank, and fellow shipped the night away.
Before we left though Yura came up to all of us volunteers and started saying “what does it mean?!” Again and making everyone laugh, he eventually goes up to Mark-Phillip and whispers in his ear “what does it mean?!” He was a very funny kid.
The next day we woke up earlier than usual because we were having bible study and prayer early because we were leaving at about 9 a.m. To drive to Satu-Mare Romania. So did the bible study and then drove over to camp had breakfast said good bye to all of the kids who were there and then got in the van to go to Romania, it was difficult to say good bye because of all of the memories I made with the kids there and building relationships, I hope I get to go back one day.
In Satu-Mare we got to spend a couple of hours there, and I got to have Schwarma for the first time! It was pretty tasty! From Satu-Mare we took two trains to go to Budapest Hungary. We bought all of our tickets at the same time by the same person, but some how all of our tickets had different destinations on them. Th first train ride went off without a hitch, the second one was a little more difficult because we were apparently on the wrong train,but still going to Budapest. The conductor was seriously threatening to throw us off the train though at the next stop, thankfully two guys came up to try and figure out what was going on and paid for all of our tickets to just fix the matter. That was a fantastic experience, it was also my first time riding a train.
We got into Budapest shortly before Sunset and went grocery shopping before finding the hotel that we were staying at. So we toured around Budapest for awhile trying to find our hotel, we were walking with all of our bags and groceries for about an hour and a half. Needless to say after a full day of traveling and carrying luggage and groceries around we were all pretty tired that night!
Saturday we all slept in a little, but woke up early enough so that we could have the complimentary breakfast. We relaxed for a little bit after that and then got ready to go tour the city and take pictures. We ended up splitting into two groups after awhile, Greg and Michala went out touring on their own, and then Mark-Phillip, Stephka, Julia, and I walked around looking for a park that we could sit down at and listen to a sermon since it was the Sabbath.
We met up with Greg and Michala later on that day and got some ice cream and then went back to the hotel to relax until the end of sunset. After the sun went down we all went out to eat at this nice restaurant downtown and we all got pizza! It was tasty and some thing we were all craving very much!
After that we went back to the hotel and packed all of our bags because the next day we were all going home. Woke up Sunday morning and took a cab to the airport (this was also my first time riding in a cab), we got there early to get checked in and be where our plane borded. It was just Greg, Michala, Stephka, and myself. Mark-Phillip and Julia left earlier that morning. We landed in Frankfurt and then the three of them had to run to catch their next flight, mine didn’t leave until 45 minutes after theirs. Had an eight hour flight from Frankfurt to DC. I landed at about 4 and went through customs and everything and then just had to sit in the airport for 5 hours doing nothing, thankfully I had service on my phone again and could talk and txt people while waiting. At 10 p.m. My flight to Dayton took off and I landed about 11:30 and waited for my checked luggage to come, it never did (at least that I saw). So I just went home, I got picked up by a good friend. He drove two hours there to get me and two hours back home. After it was all said and done, I was up for over 24 hours traveling home. Needless to say I was super tired, but recovered from jet lag fairly quickly. A few days later finally found out that my bag was scanned at the airport.
All in all, this was an amazing experience! I’m so thankful that I got this opportunity to go over seas and serve! I look forward to doing something like this again, and I encourage you to look for opportunities to go out and serve! You can find ways to serve here in the states, or traveling abroad!
You are awesome! God knows it and so should you!