Peace Out 2019! Hello 2020!
I will use a quote of a friend who said that 2019 “was a wild ride. Nothing, almost nothing went as planned.” That sums up our 2019. It was wild, chaotic and sometimes difficult but we survived it and looking forward to 2020. As usually, our house was full of friends and family and we spent a considerable time one the road. Overall, we made it – a few scratches here and there, a bruised knee from failing to meet that goal that seemed important at the time and a few new gray hairs from stressing over events that we couldn’t change.
Our top moments of 2019:
Our new home in Johannesburg, SA
We made a big move to South Africa in 2019! We are slowly transitioning to our new life in Johannesburg. Like all things in this life, it will have its ups and downs but we are thanking God for this new season in our life. We recognize that it will be a different vibe then our time in Nigeria. For one, Johannesburg reminds one of a European city but on the other hand, we will be confronted with race unlike our time in Nigeria.
Saying goodbye to Nigeria
It was difficult to say goodbye to my home of five and a half years. Met some amazing people, had some amazing experience and will forever remember our time in Nigeria. I often define my time in Nigeria like this, for the first year I struggled with the country. In year two and three my feeling bordered on hate and in year four and five, I just went with the flow. Nigeria will kill you if you fight it but celebrate you if you just “go with the flow.” Nevertheless, we are on to big and better things and will continue to share our experiences in the Rainbow Nation!
The Big 40!
Forty is not so bad. Maybe I am not where I thought I would be but boy, God has been a moving and a shaking in my (our) lives. Check out the blog on turning 40!
Auburn goes to the Final Four
In some ways, I feel guilty saying that Auburn’s trip to the final four is a top moment of 2019 because I had very little to do with it. I didn’t block one player or hit any three pointers. However, as a long time Auburn fan, Auburn sports has always found a way to lift my spirits when life is difficult. The first few months of 2019 were difficult and challenging and following Auburn’s run to Minneapolis was a highlight of the first four months. Getting to travel and experience the game was icing on the cake. It was a good time!
Nigeria General Elections
To loosely quote the Sound of Music, “how do you solve a problem like Nigeria. How do you catch a cloud and pin it down? How do you find a word that means Nigeria?” Everything in Nigeria is big and over the top and that includes its elections. To even understand Nigeria’s elections you need an update glossary of terms that include words that sometimes don’t make sense to the casual observer. However, elections come and go and Nigeria keeps moving along.
Anniversary trip to Austria, Croatia and BiH
I am sure Sheila will say it’s me but our vacation always turn into a history lesson! (Yes, its me). This year, it was our road trip through conflict in Croatia and Bosnia & Herzegovina (BiH). Check out our blogs about our anniversary trip to Austria, Croatia and BiH.
Christmas in Rwanda
In case you were wondering, Rwanda is not known for its Christmas markets, artistically decorated Christmas trees and carolers singing Christmas hymns in the street. But the country is changing and trying to adapt a western style Christmas. I know what you are saying, Sentell, you are forcing foreign traditions on a country and trying to change how they mark Christmas. And, yes that is exactly what I am trying to do. Bring a little Western style Christmas to Rwanda. But I can’t take credit for what I experienced when I arrived in Rwanda. Christmas lights blanketed the town, Christmas trees in every home I visited and family gatherings happening around town. I spent Christmas day making cakes for the 40 visitors that came to Sheila’s house to celebrate Christmas. That is how you celebrate Christmas – spending too much time in the kitchen and taking naps because you are too full to do anything else.