Rocket City

Sunday, May 21, 2017
Huntsville, Alabama, United States
From here on out, Huntsville, Alabama will always feel like home. I joke when people ask about where we are from because we have moved around from various places all throughout our lives, even before we got married. Life is like that sometimes. We only spent a year in Alabama, and during that time we even left many times to visit other places. But it was a significant year in our life together and impacted us a lot in many ways. Changed us a lot in many ways.

Our second shortest visit anywhere on this quick trip to the US was in Alabama . We had just enough time to take care of a little bit of business, visit with good friends, and go and see some of the congregations we are so familiar with now. In total we were there less than three days before we headed out to Texas.

Walking off the plane into the humidity and fresh springtime air of Alabama was amazing! I don't know if anyone else could smell the flowers growing, but I definitely could. I can never get enough of the flowers, wild and domestic, that grow in Alabama in the springtime. My favorite has to be the magnolia trees that have giant white blooms that smell so fragrant! They fill the air with a sweet scent no matter where you go, and this lasts for months. Rarely have I experienced something similar, but then again I haven't seen the entire world yet.

When we arrived, we were met by none other than David and Denise Dobson. We stayed with them when we were looking for a place to live before we moved to Alabama about a year and a half ago . For the next year the four of us spent a lot of time together. Alabama was part of our training ground for getting out and visiting people. The majority of the people we encountered there were very hospitable, and we like to think we fit right in since we have always done our best to provide hospitality to others. And we try to take those lessons, and everything else we picked up in the South, to other parts of the world.

On Friday I had a chance to see if I remembered how to drive to some of the places we went to every day. It was a bright, sunny day that was a very welcomed change to the cold, wet weather we had up until this point. Friday evening we had visitors come to the house where we ate some delicious snacks, and visited with our friends, sharing old and new stories, checking up on how everyone is doing. Saturday we woke up early and left to visit the congregation in Gadsden who had combined with those from Birmingham. As always it was a pleasure to see all of them, to be encouraged ourselves, and to be able to share with them what we have seen and experienced in Malawi. We sat and talked over food for as long as possible before we had to leave for Huntsville where another congregation awaited us. And again we were met by excited, smiling faces of those we had gotten to know. Again we shared what we had seen in Malawi. Again we sat and talked over food for as long as possible.

A heavy rainstorm prolonged our time in the church hall as most waited until the rain let up decently and they could make it safely home. The sky was darkened a lot sooner than it was supposed to. The rain and cold had found us in the South. Our last few hours were spent hiding from the weather outside. On Sunday we took off for Texas. The rains followed us all the way and then some.
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