All Aboard!

Hello to all the faithful blog addicts out there! We are currently (as of writing, but not as of posting) three hours into the 10 hour train ride to Budapest. Snack stockpiles are quickly being depleted and emotions are running ravenous. This morning was the one that I consider to be the hardest of the trip; saying goodbye. The moment is one that I had successfully pushed to the back of my mind for the duration of our time in Romania, but its arrival was inevitable

Despite the early departure, some of the campers came to send us off at the train station. Consistent with the nature of our interactions, there were many a selfie and group shot to be had. I think I hugged everyone on that platform at least three times, most of whom I knew. Kidding, mom, I know not to talk to strangers, even if I do love hugs.

I think most of us held in the waterworks until getting on the train, but I know I wasn’t the only one crying like a baby once aboard. Saying goodbye is hard in and of itself, but not having the certainty of seeing these amazing people again made it ten times harder. I count it as a blessing, though, that we made friends this hard to say goodbye to. We can also rest easy knowing that the campers are in the loving hands of the Open Roads team, who dedicate so much of their lives to them.

Although many of us had poorly thought out plans to stay in Romania ready at a moment’s notice, we are also extremely excited for our debrief time in Budapest. First of all, it’s Budapest, which is in Hungary, which is another country, so that is awesome. Second, we will be spending some valuable time as a team talking about what we have experienced.

Our time together is coming to a close, but I know that the memories we have made will be ones we all treasure. All of the water fights, and there were many of them, the hugs, the awkward improvised sign language to bridge the language barrier, and the sauna-like bus ride will be fondly remembered. Okay, the infamous bus ride may not be that fondly remembered, but you know what I mean. Anyway, I count myself seriously blessed to a part of this team. I can’t wait to see what our next few days together have in store.

Thanks to all of our readers and commenters out there, our blog would be so very lonely without you!

Leah

4 thoughts on “All Aboard!

  1. My heart and prayers go out to all of you. Saying good-bye is so difficult. You went there to serve others and found that you gained so much more than you gave. Thinking about all of you often. I can’t wait to see what God will do to shape each of you through the experiences you’ve had. Heather Watts

  2. Leah! It is so good to “hear” your voice! I miss you terribly but know you are meant to be right where you are. Thanks for writing a post…and for getting on the train! I know you and your heart for those folks. I’m sure it was extremely hard saying goodbye. But I’m quite sure the team has left an indelible mark on the hearts of all your Romanian friends. Trust that God will use that in mighty ways for His glory! I like hugs, too. And I can.not.wait to hug you! Load of love!

  3. Leahbean! I loved this post!! (you are a wonderful writer!) Well, to be honest I have loved all of the posts! I has sounded like this trip has been another beautifully God-guided and blessed adventure! I am so glad you all were able to join Open Roads, once again, to help them with the great work they are doing in Romania.

    SO to all the Waunakee HGers! We are all so proud of you and can’t wait to see you all very soon! Get home and rest up so we can see you next weekend for a party in the back yard!

    Enjoy Budapest and travel safely home!
    Godspeed!
    Sarah

  4. Great post, Leah! I love hearing about this trip through each of your voices. I’m praying for each of you as you process through the many things God has shown you and done through you. Happy debriefing, team! 🙂

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