Shavuot, Pentecost and Transitions

Cheese cake for Shavuot and Pentecost

The Quality Inn at the Halifax airport has a really outstanding selection for breakfast. Their staff was friendly and helpful so much so that they noticed what was needed without being asked. Christjanna’s last day with us was bitter sweet as we enjoyed eggs, sausage, choices of yogurt, breads, pastries, waffles, tea, coffee and juice. Our next tasks was to pack what needed to go home in her checked bag. We also continued helping Clairesse with her Youth Dynamics Stonewater Ranch letter since she still needs to raise support for her summer ministry work as a Horse Wrangler.

Lunch found us back at the Inn’s restaurant sharing the excellent seafood chowder, fish and chips, onion rings and salad. Clairesse and I escorted her to the shuttle van and kissed her goodbye. Originally we were all going to come home on Saturday. Due to using these travel vouchers, our tickets had to be purchased one way at a time. Christjanna uses an app that helps her keep track of the best prices. It was a group effort to get each leg of our journey booked. Christjanna got a good price for her ticket and suddenly the price went up. She quickly found the same price for us on Sunday. An extra day to rest and chill out was a welcome change from hurrying back to “real life”.

Clairesse and I spent the afternoon sitting in the sunshine while I worked on blogging she did some reading as well as editing pictures for the children’s book we have been collaborating on. She went and took a nap. It was a good way to prepare for our trip home.

Sunday morning was another good breakfast that had hard boiled eggs and bacon plus everything else. We spent a leisurely morning packing and enjoyed a walk upside of the motel prior to getting in the van. Our driver was friendly and asked if we were “Trump” supporters. I generally view this sort of question as a “loaded question”. I think the position of a person needs to be respected even if we don’t agree with everything he or she does or thinks. He seemed to feel frustrated on behalf of someone he knew who was not being allowed in to the USA and had to fly around to get to a hike he wants to do in South America. I responded, “It seems to me that the law of unintended consequences is alive on planet earth.” Clairesse shared that she had attended college in Abbotsford during the last election. She said there were things she liked that he was doing well and other things not so much. A young man who was apparently in training to drive the shuttle van pointed out that they have Trudeau to deal with so they really can’t talk too loudly. The driver commended Clairesse on her diplomatic answer. Not much time to talk more.

The Halifax airport security people were among the kindest I have ever experienced. My clogs set off the alarm. He calmly had me take them off and walk through again. Another security guard offered to pick up our bins of stuff after it was scanned and placed in on another counter so we could gather our things. Another man in a kiosk selling Christmas stockings with dogs on them, noticed I was on my way to fill up my water bottles and told me that the Starbucks across the way would fill them for free. Another woman overheard us talking about where to go next and stopped and offered us directions. A security guard noticed he had let us in the wrong place. He came and found us, acknowledged his error and kindly redirected us to the proper location. Generally people don’t take responsible for their mistakes and they blame others for them. It was refreshing to be treated with such courtesy.

Christjanna had warned us about customs in Toronto. She had to dump out her water and almost had to get rid of her maple syrup souvenirs she had purchased for co-workers at the Halifax airport after she’d already gone through security. We did not try to purchase anything in the Halifax airport as a result of her warning which was just as well as we did not have any more room in our bags. She thought that because she’d gone through security in Halifax, it was done. Apparently Toronto does the US customs so it is a much more stringent level of inspection.

We had an uneventful trip from Halifax to Toronto and dumped out our water in preparation for customs. We packed our extra food planning to save some money on dinner. Clairesse got tagged for inspection and got her cream cheese confiscated. I ended up getting us drinks from Starbucks and paid for cream cheese for Clairesse. We still had enough bread, cheese and sliced meats for a satisfying dinner. It is amazing what can be construed has potentially dangerous. It often seems capricious. I’m thankful for God’s care as we go through each level of earthly “security”.

I worked on the “Tea day to D-Day” post and attached more pictures to it. Clairesse helped me proof read it and get it published. A blessing on this trip is having time to do the thinking so I can write.

We entered the plane for the last leg to Seattle. They had thought we were going to be able to leave on time but a delay occurred due to the air-conditioning having a problem. We finally left and were on our way.

As we flew higher, the beauty of the sun filled sky lit up my window. Reaching traveling altitude, we encountered quite a bit of turbulence. The buffeting reminded me of Ephesians 6:10-20 and the fact that we don’t fight against flesh and blood but against powers and principalities in the heavenly places that we cannot see. I found myself praying for God’s protection and for His angels (Psalms 91) to surround our plane and grant us a safe trip and wisdom for the crew and pilot. The turbulence quieted down and the trip was uneventful.

We arrived in Seattle and made our way to the baggage claim. Christjanna had the brilliant idea of picking us up at departures as the baggage claim area was backed up so far, no cars were coming through. Jeff followed her in our van so I could go with him and Clairesse go with Christjanna to prepare for her trip back up the mountain. Jeff and I went to another Quality Inn as our next stop was to be Cannon Beach Conference Center to teach the 10-12 year olds for the annual Village Missions Conference.