We have been back for a week and I just cannot seem to shake the jet lag - which is funny since I normally never suffer from jet lag and I was totally fine in Kenya! As soon as I sit down, I am out! On my second day back, someone came by to visit, and I could not summon the energy to keep my eyes open! Not my most hospitable time! Three weeks without having to worry about housework, cooking or work and then having to jump into all that almost immediately must have gotten to me!
The kids totally enjoyed their visit and keep asking when they are going back to Kenya! They were totally spoilt - a smile bought them everything mommy and daddy said no to! Kids who had never had soda or gum before were having them everyday! Re-entry for them has been interesting - no longer can they leave the house unsupervised because there were so many people to look out for them and shock of all shock, they have to walk everywhere because they are not countless people offering piggyback rides!
I missed the point of vacation which is rest, and tried to give the kids as rich an experience as I could and scheduled activities for everyday! We racked up some miles with visits to places like Giraffe Center, Ostrich Farm, Village Market, Mamba Village, a Coffee Plantation, Lake Nakuru, Masinga Dam, Ndakaini Dam, and of course the highlight, a Safari! The kids were totally amazed at all of God's creation and it was so cute each making claim to their own animal! The lions gave us amazing shows and would come real close to the tour vans. We could not have asked to stay at a better tented camp than Ashnil Mara - the customer service was amazing and they were not fazed at having a large group of 42 and all the different requests a large group makes! The manager was the ultimate professional and consistently came to ask me if there was anything else they could do for us! He even arranged for an amazing hot lunch by the river with the hippos after our tour drivers dropped the ball and forgot to order our packed lunch for one of our game drive days. And best of all, the waiters knew all my kids by name, would give them piggy back rides and would always anticipate their needs and as soon as I went to the buffett to serve one of the kids, I would come back to the table and find they have already served the other munkins! They took me to the poor house as in all my previous 6 trips to Mara, this was by far the best customer service I had ever received and I wanted the waiters to know as much! Sarova Lion Hill in Lake Nakuru, a total anticlimax in terms of customer service after Ashnil, but their food was great!
Christmas was so simple this year - church service and then lots of food with family and friends. Nothing like having over a hundred people for Christmas lunch - the fellowship and laughter was so amazing. And not having to worry about getting the right gift and the right wrapping and all the other worries of a commercialized Christmas!
Trying to live out James 1:27 to support widows ~ we went unannounced and the surprise on this precious widow's face was priceless. And most humbling of all was that she with almost nothing scrambled to make us a meal even as we insisted that she not bother herself. She delighted in serving us her best - even though she had nothing to spare.
New Year's Eve was so unevenful - fast asleep in a hotel and could not even muster the energy to go watch fireworks in London which were supposed to be amazing.
I must have looked haggard on our return as a kind police officer approached my girls who were skipping and giggling to tell them mommy had had a long flight and to be good to mommy as she got the luggage! He then helped me hold their hands and go look for the daddy and the boys who were just anxious to go home and had walked ahead of us!