So! Here I am! The grand ol land of Australia. Or to be more exact, Perth!
The flight over was straight forward. I left England midday at 13 degrees celsius, arrived into Dubai midnight at 35 degrees celsius, and eventually made it to Perth where it was around 21 degrees Monday 5.25pm local time. Bags arrived with the plane and nothing was broken…yey! Thankfully my hand luggage wasn’t weighed! Phew! It was about 15kg!! Oops! Stinkin massive laptop 😛 Watched about a billion movies. Last Night, No Strings Attached, The Lincoln Lawyer, Just Go With It, Hanna… and two others that I don’t remember. Oh but the best bit was the optic lighting on the plane which made it look like stars. That was so fun!! 😀 I also got to see two amazing sunsets and one pretty cool sunrise. Oh and I got to fly over the middle east during a clear day. That was pretty cool. I’ve done it before but it’s still pretty cool. Not everyone can say they’ve done that 🙂
Thankfully I managed to sleep 10 hours straight and woke up with no jet lag. However I feel a little over slept and now I’m not tired even though it’s currently 11.40pm local time. Today I got to go have coffee with a friend (Jo) of the girl I’m staying with (Sarah); get a sim card in Perth city (yey!); walk around Kalamunda; and got to see Fitz this evening as he dropped by for a couple of minutes. Tomorrow I’m off to see the Gosen’s which I’m looking forward too; and also I’ll get to see Bethia at the weekend 😀 Still trying to catch up with a few others so hopefully something can be arranged regarding that. But all in all a great start to the trip 😀
Thanks for your thoughts and prayers everyone! Please keep them coming! 😀
So tonight I write. I actually had a big debate with myself all day as to whether or not I would blog. Looks like we know the outcome of that!
There’s so much to share with you all. Since my last blog I was in Holland for a week at a camp called MTO. It was my 12th year and 5th year as a leader. It’s very similar to Teenstreet so I wont give you all the nitty gritty of it all. However, it was really on my heart this year to spend more quality time with the teens. Amazingly those opportunities came high and low and almost none of them were planned. It’s a privilege to walk life with others. To laugh and to cry with them. So many stories. So much hurt, loneliness and heartache. This world that we live in isn’t too much fun when you scratch the surface of the live of those around us. MTO only has about 100 people attending so there’s a real sence of community. I love the youth there. Every single one of them is precious and it’s a blessing to have them in my life. I can’t imagine it any other way. New friends and reconnecting with old friends… MTO is something that so many of us look towards every year. I really felt my blank canvas of a future was starting to be painted again. Was really encouraging to have so many amazing possibilities revealed to me.
I arrived back on the Friday… one week ago. And the next day it was my leaving/birthday party. Talk about a whirlwind time. Thankfully mum and dad did a lot of work whilst I was at MTO and so there was a great deal less to do on the day. About 45 people came and amazingly they came from all over the country as well as from America. I’m so blessed to have such amazing friends. Dad informed me that I had a mystery guest coming and that I would have to pick them up from the train station. I had no idea who it was about since he told be 5 hours before arrival I spent 5 hours trying to work it out. Laura came with me to the station and we spent the whole 5 minutes laughing at the fact that we had no idea who or what train we were looking out for. Amazingly as we pulled into the car park this dude walks out… Yep, it was Tunde. I could NOT believe it. Was so weird (in a good way) to see him standing outside my car in CARLISLE.
I had a really fun time. Everyone was so generous and Tunde performed for us (haha, poor guy). Over the next few days people left to go back home and Tunde was the last to leave. We had some interesting chats… and a very adventurous spider moment. Sorry tree huggers, the size of it left little to negotiate… it was in fact quickly and painlessly murdered with a shoe, hairspray and a tissue.
These past few days have been insanely busy. As I write I have exactly 36 hours to complete everything which is more than possible however my body is giving me a big of a hard time by telling me it’s tired. As well as trying to pack and finish off the last bits and pieces, I’ve also been trying to spend as much time as possible with the family. Especially Laura. We went to Keswick on Wednesday and had a bit of a girlie date. Fish and chips, shopping, crazy golf, cake and tea…
I wont get the opportunity to write again before I leave so I just want to say a massive thank you to everyone. Thank you to everyone who has walked life with me in Carlisle. My school friends, OM friends and every other friend… you are all so special to me. Whilst I close this chapter of my life to start another please know you are with me in my thoughts and heart. Thank you to everyone for your support in helping me move. The talks, wisdom, prayer, finances… I shall continue to keep you posted. Thank you to my family for loving me. Goodbyes are hard but they don’t have to be forever. We’ll see each other again 🙂 Keep walking life with me everyone… I need and enjoy you!
See you on the other side 😀 … Hopefully it’ll be warmer there than in England 🙂
Long awaited blog I know! Okies… let me up date you all on life!
About two weeks ago I went down to Birmingham for the night to see a close friend that I went live with at university. Was a chilled out evening catching up and watching “Come Dine With Me.” Gosh I miss her! The next day I went on to Leicester where I hung out with another girl friend who was on my course. We enjoyed a day of shopping before meeting up with a close guy friend of mine for the evening. In true Akila style they ended up drunk and I danced like a sober maniac 😛 The next day Chris and I went out for Chinese and watched “Bridesmaids” at the cinema. Was so funny!! Since we were getting up super early the next morning to head off to the airport it was an early night for us all.
Saturday was a 3.30am start and we drove to Birmingham airport to meet up with the others who were going to Germany for Teenstreet. Since Laura was with that group of people; and since mum and dad drove them down; and since it was the last Saturday of July which reminded us all of Mike’s death… we had a coffee together. Our flight was at 7am, we arrived into Frankfurt around 9am and we were off the bus and at Teenstreet around 2pm.
It was held at Offenburg this year and it was SO cool to catch up with so many old friends. Many people from the ship and many I did not expect to see which was even more sweet! The few days I would walk down the main strip and feel like I caught up with at least one person every few meters!
Saturday evening started with a country group meeting to introduce everyone to Teenstreet and complete the registration process. However I really must tell this story. There was a guy called Tunde. Now he and dad had been involved in two other missions trips before this one at Teenstreet. I had never meet Tunde in person but we spoke a fair bit on facebook as I added him after dad raved about him so much. Anyways, Tunde is part of a band and a number of my friends were all quite excited that I knew Tunde and another guy Leke as they felt it was a link to the band which made them feel cool (hahahahahahaha!!). They asked me if I thought it’d be awkward seeing Tunde for the first time and I was all like “Nah man why would it be?” Anyways, when the band stand up in front of about 200-250 people at the country group meeting to introduce themselves and what they’ll be doing at Teenstreet…. Tunde saw me in the crowd and waved. Slightly awkward, I laughed and waved back. But then when it got to introducing himself he goes, “Hi my name is Tunde but before I continue I really must say Hi to Akila! I’ve never meet her before but we’ve talked on Facebook quite a bit and I’m pretty tight with her dad… *notices I’m going very red*… Oh and look at her she’s going all red!!” Bhahahahahah!! Oh my gosh I was SO embarrassed at being singled out like that hahahaha.
Sunday felt like THE longest day which was so cool. We have meetings and small groups in the morning to discuss various life and Christian things. But then in the afternoon we pretty much hang out. Laura’s bikini bottoms came undone as she was walking across the middle field and we girls had to gather around her so she could retie them bhahahahahaha…AWKWARD! We had a little rave outside too which was so cool. German weather is SO different to British weather… you were barely outside for minutes and you’d already be getting burnt!
There’s so much to say about Teenstreet…. it was so awesome. This year I was a small group leader and my girls were such fun. It was also so cool to hang out with the Writeway guys and get to know them a little more. Tunde and I had some interesting chats… including whether he tanned or not I’m HONESTLY not completely dumb…. it’s just he’s SO dark I can’t imagine him being any darker! Oh… and apparently he’s my adopted brother now lol! Overall, in a few words… Teenstreet was AWESOME. Made what I feel like were some pretty cool friendships and reconnected with amazing friends 🙂
The 1st of August was Mike’s 2 year anniversary. It was hard in its own way but not too bad. There were a few tears but one of my bestest friends in the whole wide world text to say she was thinking of me…. seriously gave me so much encouragement and comfort. She’s so awesome and I can’t WAIT to see her in Australia!
I left Teenstreet on Saturday, arrived into London and when straight to a missions conference in Greater London. Writeway performed and Tunde wasn’t the only one to single me out of the crowd again… Leke did it too! Honestly! What is it with those guys putting me on the spot 😛 Hahahaha, wouldn’t change them for the world! They’re too cool! Sunday I spoke at ARC… I thought the speech was rubbish cos I was nervous and I cried…which didn’t help bahaha. But I prayed loads before and after my little speech that God would somehow use my not so greatness to speak to just one person. I got a few comments after though which is ALWAYS encouraging and I was so thankful that God was able to use my simpleness. I wouldn’t have hahahaha.
Anyways I got home late last night. Drove legally on the motorway for the first time last night for about 3 hours. I felt like my eyes were so messed up afterwards though!!! Like my depth perception wasn’t quite right! Lol! Maybe just me 😛 Today was a day of unpacking, washing, cleaning and repacking for Belgium on Wednesday. Still have SO much to do before I go. Tomorrow will be a busy day too… gotta say it’s been nice to crawl into a real bed these past two night after sleeping in a warehouse with another 300 odd girls. You have NO idea what that’s like. It’s smelly and the air is so heavy. It’s so damp… so gross hahaha.
Anyways, I probably wont blog again now until after MTO. But hope that’s an ok little update!