Day 3: safe in Nagpur

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March 15th 2012
Published: March 15th 2012
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*i just need to point out that we would love to post pictures but the Internet at the school is legging a little and getting posts up seems to be the best we can do at this time...but bare with us!

Day 3: safe arrival in Nagpur

Passports all accounted for? Check. Nobody sick yet? Check. Everyone asleep from Seoul to Mumbai - absolutely! Mumbai was a whirlwind in the early hours of the morning. One would think that an airport would be slow and quiet at 2:45am...not in Mumbai. Everything was on time and we had to take a short commuter bus from the international terminal to the domestic gates to catch our flight to Nagpur. I'd like to think that everyone was simply being nice but I think that the fact that we had 2 blonde females and pale faces had something to do with us being moved to the front of every line. Immigration was a breeze and we were waved through customs. All the luggage was accounted for and there in the distance we saw an all to familiar face - Errol! It was like seeing a brown oasis! Finally someone who spoke the language, knew the area, and who was willing to lead and guide us to the school. The domestic flight was a breeze and a short 1.5 hours skip over to Nagpur. And this is where things got crazy.

We were warmly welcomed by a plethora of students, directors, and drivers who scooped up all our luggage and piled us onto the school, Prem Sewa, bus. Bapu, the school director, Frank, the school founder, and a series of young energetic school boys made the short 40 minute drive to the school entertaining to say the least. It was as if we were long-lost relatives. Smiliing, hugging, and warm welcomes made this a great 'start' to our stay in Nagpur.

Now, let's discuss the traffic patterns in Nagour for a moment. Simply put - there is none. Your strongest asset while driving is your horn and from what I understand the louder the horn, the bigger the vehicle, and more unlikely to stop for anything! Including dogs, cats, cows, bulls, women, children, scooters and weddings - yes weddings! None of this will make total sense without pictures but we drove right through a wedding - in a school bus. Needlessto say we took many pictures on our way to the school - mostly for insurance reasons.

And then the bus turned in to the school. 'Welcome to Prem Sewa' - the school modo, 'do something, lead, follow, or get out of the way!' what an entrance but it didn't stop there. We all got off the bus to what seems to be parked a good city block away from the actual school. When starting the walk we rounded the corner only to find all 700 boys lined up on either side singing, banging drums, smiling, and throwing confetti all to our arrival. These kids have absolutely nothing and yet they celebrate our arrival? In looking back at the team, it was enough to bring anyone to tears. They didn't even know who we were and they were throwing a party.

Let me take a moment here to reflect on something; arguablely India is one of the spiritually darkest countries in the world. The poverty, famine, drought, religious superiority, and persecutions makes this country suppressive to say the least. BUT the spirit of God is heavy in Prem Sewa. It is thick, tangible, and practical. It moves in these kids and teachers in obvious ways - and we've only been here for a few hours. Prem Sewa feels like home!

With handmade flower lays around each of our necks we found our way to the guest house which far surpassed our expectations (I.e. western toilets and spectacular bedrooms). We then settled in for breakfast (we think cause we each have lost all sense of time). Shortly afterwards we were able to get a tour of the school grounds led by a very witty Frank. The German humor and warm heartedness made us feel right at home. We met some students, Soren exercised his ESL/comedy skills to a grade 7 English class and we were constantly followed by a herd of puppies - not the ones you want take home!

And so here we are now. 3:17pm, just had lunch, and are resting waiting for some hangout time with the students. Each of us are starting to feel the reality of long travel and lack of sleep but none would deny that we are eager to get our hands dirty and get whooped at cricket!

Please pray for a great night sleep tonight for the team, and a boldness to step out faith and make Jesus known to the school. Kids, teachers, and each other.

Until next time,

A very tired but excited India Team.

Additional photos below
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15th March 2012

Wow! What an exciting and welcoming entrance! It is so great to get updates on your experiences. Can't wait for the next one! Love and prayers, Sherrene
15th March 2012

Just read your comments...quite a trip...thankful to God for a safe arrival! The team is constantly on our minds...and we pray for you every time the Mission comes to mind. Looking forward to receiving the other updates. Blessings.
15th March 2012

I hope it was a spelling error.........
The teacher in me hopes the comment at the top of the Day 3 post was a spelling error.... "the best we can do at this time...but BARE with us! " Now I know it is very hot in India and that the team may be looking for support from back home, but it is far too cold here for us to BARE with the team in India. Hopefully this was a spelling error and the word should have been "bear".
15th March 2012

I am in tears. (and I'm in my office at work and my employees regard me as someone with little emotion so this is a bit bizarre for them) so ..... wow again.
16th March 2012

Thanks for the update
Thinking of you all daily keep healthy and happy
16th March 2012

The blog is wonderful and we are so excited to share in your adventure. With the exception of the almost missing passport, it sounds and looks like you are well looked after. Have an awesome time. We wish we were there.
16th March 2012

Karen sent your address. We thank God you arrived safe and sound. We are praying for you daily. Karen says Caleb is doing fine but I am sure he will be excited to see you again when you get back home. We love you. Take care.
16th March 2012

The driving
This reminds me much of China...same rules apply. Love the write up and the pictures and can't wait to read more tomorrow. You guys are awesome!!!
17th March 2012

hey guys. thank you SO much for sending all these amazing details. crazy wonderful!! so much more than we could ask or imagine, eh?? humbling really, the Goodness and the Grace. hope you feel the love constantly travelling to you at the speed of light from all of us at home. we miss you terribly, but don\'t want you to come home a minute too soon. : ) blessings and cool nights! w&b, m&d
17th March 2012

Thanks for sharing your experiences with us...I know God's hand is on this family has been praying for you and we will continue to do so

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