I drag my body through the Kisumu airport, through the Nairobi airport, and through the Johannesburg airport. I find myself telling me (in my head) to stand up tall, to make my backpack look light, to pat my cheeks to make them look like I have color in them, and to not look sick. The last thing I need is to get quarantined somewhere! So, even though I really, really want to lean on every counter I approach, I hold it together and make it through customs and flights and airports just fine. I do find myself running to the bathrooms in each airport and there comes a point where I don’t even bother dragging my backpack with me – I just ask a kind soul to please watch it. He nods for the 10th time when I ask him AGAIN to watch the pack and he finally asks if all is ok. I tell him it is and we continue waiting for our flight, as though nothing is out of the ordinary. He must think I am a nut.
I make it to Johannesburg a little after midnight and thank God that Eric has set me up in a hotel at the airport, thanks to frequent flyer miles. I sleep for 10 hours straight, empty and dry, but knowing that sleep is good and healing. After all those hours, I shower and feel almost human again.
I take my breakfast voucher with me and head out towards my favorite airport terminal. I laugh out loud thinking that I actually have a favorite terminal, but it is true. Johannesburg has two incredible terminals – the domestic terminal has a fabulous Woolsworth, but the international terminal has the best airport food, I believe. I head there for a cup of tea, a slice of toast, and my anti-nausea and amoeba medicine, praying that my belly is fine. I sip and chew slowly – I wait. I sip and chew some more – I wait. A little pain, but no need to run out of the restaurant and I decide I am going to live again. YES!! Thank you for all your good wishes and prayers!
I cannot wait to see my family! They leave USA tomorrow, just as I make my way to Zimbabwe. I look forward to hugging and kissing them, hearing about their adventures during the past couple of weeks and sharing work together on this continent. It will be so good to be back together again!