|The great Pagor Akot|
We have had some things fall in line with our plan of getting the Land Rover to Mombasa. Through multiple contacts and phone calls with those on the other side of this lovely rock we call Earth, we have found out the best process for getting our vehicle to Africa, and encountering the least amount of hassles once we are in Sudan. This involves registering the vehicle under Hope Sudan Charities PRIOR to our voyaging over there, and more specifically it involves 1200 bucks like 30 seconds ago. It has been brought to our attention that we would be much better off having the vehicle pre-registered vs. trying to get that done days before the country tries to vote for it's independence. It will likely be busy, chaotic and we won't want to be in Juba (the capital of S. Sudan) for too long during this time. We will be working to raise these funds over the next few days and will be happy to see how it comes about and falls in our lap just like every other little step of this adventure. God is good!
That being said, we've all made a bit of a sacrifice so far to have this thing done. The thing most people mention when talking about going to the third world is something like this: "man, I bet once you see what it's like over there, you're never the same..." - or something to that effect.
And it is the truth. I remember on my first trip to Kenya in 2007 when I was riding a van back to get on an airplane and go home. I had enjoyed my visit but the whole time I was fighting what you would probably call common anxieties: "am I safe? am I going to make it to the airport? is this old van going to break down? will we get robbed? what is this that I'm eating?" Me, me, me.
We were driving through some town and I saw along the side of the road, some kid playing with a bicycle rim and a stick- I have no idea what the fun is in that but then again, I've never tried it. For some reason, seeing him so happy with so little caused me to well up with tears inside. In fact, it was all I could to do to keep from bawling right there in the van. Just typing about it brings it all back.
And then there's this plastic Starbuck's cup to the left of my keyboard right now. Venti Iced Coffee with two pumps of Classic Syrup and just a SPLASH of two percent milk. If you put too much milk in it, I'm going to ask for another one. After all, I'm shelling out 2.91 a pop for it. When I order it in the drive-thru, the manager of the Starbuck's (Tony) tells me that we've been over this, and I need to just say I want the "Randy Special." It's pathetic.
And here I am, asking everyone to give of themselves for this thing. "Surely you can spare 5 bucks- it's nothing to us! It's everything to them." Yet I turn right around and think to myself "if I don't get a coffee, I'm going to have a rough morning." I feel like a bit of a hypocrite. I need to have my heart changed and live a bit more sacrificial.
I guess it's not totally selfish. I am about to pass out and face-dive into the keyboard because I'm trying to design a logo with a 15 year old version of photoshop and powerpoint and I think the 300 mg of rocket fuel is the only thing keeping me going at this point... so tired. I'll probably review this post tomorrow and it won't make any sense because I was half asleep and in a dream. I better wrap this up because I have a lunch meeting with LBJ and Sonic the Hedgehog.
Anyway, enough reflection. I hope some of you feel called to join us and drink a little less Starbuck's, maybe eat out one less time a month or something like that. I hope more people feel called to give to this thing because that is what's going to have to happen. As we stated, it's become far too large for us to sustain now.
We really appreciate all of the assistance and donations. You have no idea how much it means to the people in Sudan that there are those who care enough to part with their hard-earned money and time to make their lives better. Thanks to everyone who's been contacting us about this and telling their friends. Please spread the word!
Until next time
-Randy on behalf of the group (except for the stuff about LBJ and Sonic the Hedgehog of course)