Musings on This Strange Thing We're to Participate in Called "Furlough"

Two weeks from right now I will be sitting in America. Probably on a carpet in front of a television blasting advertising I'm exceedingly unused to. I'm curious to see what new things are being peddled through our home screens. I'm excited to eat delicious things like burritos and donuts. And ESPN. Oh man. How I love ESPN.

It will have been two years since I've set foot in America, and really three since I've spent any time there. The last trip I made was just for a few weeks while I knocked out a seminary class or two. This trip will be six months long and that scares the crap out of me. First, and I think primarily, because I have two small children who will not understand this move to be temporary. Six months is simply too long to keep telling them we'll be going home soon. And thus we need to find them friends and get them involved in some kind of life they can enjoy rather than have them feel they're stuck in transition forever.

Second, I'm scared because six months is just downright a long time to be away from home. Furlough is usually not overwhelmingly busy. While we need to raise some support and I need to knock out a bunch more seminary classes, the rest of the time is pretty responsibility free. I look forward to the time of recharge. Reading books I've been putting off, running absurd distances on pristinely clean American soil, etc... But six months, at the end of the day, is just simply too long.

I love my job too much. I love what I'm doing and being away from it for so long is intimidating. Things will certainly start, and others will end, or fail in my absence (though not necessarily because of my absence), and I'm sad I'll miss it. On top of that I'll miss my team — my friends.

But I hope I get a lot more time to write. I hope I finish my seminary degree and apply for a PhD. I hope burritos are every bit as good as I remember them being. I hope donuts are everywhere. Always. And I hope my whole family returns here confirmed and renewed in our calling. The longer we live here the more we're detached form American life. It's been six years. And while we're under no illusions that this place is more comfortable than America, it certainly has it's upsides, and we'll miss those.

Also, where am I going to get drinkable tea?