Well, everyone, Team 2 finally arrived last night...minus two members. John and Laura were using free miles, so they went a different route. They had to spend the night in Budapest...oh, darn! Jen and Dorel are on their way to pick them up now. Yesterday, Jen, Shawn, Christina, Mihai, and I...and some others (I'm being lazy) went to the Jesus Savior Baptist church. It lasted 2 hours as all Moldovan services do. I learned yet another local custom...people get married on Sunday mornings DURING church. There was no sermon; instead, they did the normal things - prayer, songs, offering - and then here came trumpet voluntary! Very interesting to say the least. After church we grabbed a bite to eat at McDonald's. PS - I've eaten McDononald's more times in my 10 days in Moldova than I do in a year in the US. But when you're in a hurry, it just works best. From there we headed to a monastery, where I saw some of the most beautiful countryside I've ever seen. We stopped and took a bunch of pictures. We hiked up to the monastery which was tucked away inside a cliff. There I saw my first (and probably last) monk ever. The most inetersting thing to me was this elaborate altar with candles and icons, etc. There was a door in the back with a curtain, and evidently women aren't allowed to go in there. Being an American, this concept was really weird to me. "What do you mean I can't go back there?" The view off the cliff was beautiful - I took a bunch of pictures standing on the edge of the cliff to scare my mom. =) Then it was off to the airport for Team 2 and to New York for dinner.
This morning, Team 2 got their first lesson in Moldovan...nothing starts on time or goes as planned. But hey, that's ok...we still got everything done that we needed to. We spent the first 1/2 of the morning scoping out the week's projects. Then it was off to grab a quick bite to eat. Now where can someone get a quick bite to eat in Moldova? You guessed it...McDonald's! Hey, I'm lovin' it!
The second 1/2 of the day was spent staining the bed pieces with varnish (or tarnish like I kept calling it). It was fun getting to know everyone on the team and laughing together. I have a feeling there will be many more laughs this week. Or maybe it was just the fumes...you decide! God opened a door today. Tripp and I were painting on the end, and one of the orphanage workers started talking to us - Sasha. He started asking questions about "baptists" and rules and forgiveness. It was so neat to answer his questions. He is definitely seeking, so be praying for Sasha this week...that God will open his eyes to His amazing grace. That's the real reason we're here. Tomorrow, we're going to work for a while in the am and then head to camp for worship. It's important to see the kids who will rest their precious heads on these beds. We'll also be painting more "tarnish" and repairing some floors in the orphanage. I have to say I miss my kids from last week...one in particular. =) It feels weird to still be in Moldova and not with those children. I told Jen that if I turn up missing, I'm in Falesti!
Well, I guess I'm going to head to bed...it's 11:30 pm here. That's actually the earliest I've been to bed since I've been here.
Love to all...keep praying!