Thanks for all prayers as I feel certain they helped make our travel as smooth as it was in the last 24 hours! We had delays of nearly an hour in San Antonio and Dulles but neither affected our connections so we arrived on time and with all our checked luggage this evening in Moldova. The country looks green and nourished by rain but the best welcome was the smiling faces of CERI staff that met us at the airport!!! It is good to be back. We are pretty exhausted but had sweet bonding time as our team of 10 met for the first time in person at supper in the Team House. We have all determined to carry on even if our pre-shipped boxes never arrive though they are expected on Monday. Keep that prayer going.
We met a number of others on their way to Moldova along the way starting in San Antonio. There's another team of CERI workers from San Antonio who are going further north in the country for their week. A few others we met were coming from the states to visit family members but were grateful to hear why we were coming for a week in their "homeland".
There's an angel in Frankfurt I'm certain!!! I used a bathroom there and took off the document holder I wear around my neck while I travel which held my passport, checked bag tags and some money because I didn't want to accidently drop it where it didn't belong. I exited the bathroom not realizing my pouch was still hanging on a hook in a stall. I had a fairly lengthy conversation with a gal from the middle east whose flight had been changed by 3 days putting her into Germany 3 days prior to her visa permit. She told me she was going to have to stay in the airport for 3 days before she could go through customs and get out to visit her brother. I was empathetically listening to her and trying to think of things to suggest to make her time more comfortable though there wasn't much I could suggest. After that conversation, I checked a desk about when we could get our Air Moldova boarding passes. Then I headed back to where the group was waiting for me. To get there I had to take a long "down" escalater. As I was going down, a woman coming up in the midst of an escalator loaded with people started yelling and waving something! She caught my eye as she went by me and I saw that she was waving my passport open to my photo saying, "Is this you? Is this you?" I had just enough time to say "Yes" and then try to turn around to go up the down escalator while trying to keep my eye on the lady with my passport! Going up with a carry on bag and heavy purse amidst other people isn't easy and I had to just give up and hope that she would get to the top and come down behind me which is what she did do. I was trying to move toward her and she yelled for me to just stay there until we got to the bottom together. It was a long escalator!! She handed me my passport and my neck holder and immediately headed back up the escalator. I thanked her profusely as she said she was going to turn it into a desk somewhere but recognized me when she saw me on the escalator. She smiled and wished me a great day and was gone!!! Only then did I begin to realize what had just happened and what a major problem could have been created if I hadn't had my passport returned so quickly. And all was intact. Prayers for safety and protection were answered and for that I'm very grateful.