All my bags are packed
I’m ready to go
I’m standin’ here outside your door
I hate to wake you up to say goodbye
But the dawn is breakin’
It’s early morn…

Waking up in the pre-dawn hours after about three hours of sleep, because true to form, I’ve waited until the last possible minute to get ready, so I was up very late packing my bags.  It’s dark and cold.  There are a few tiny snowflakes and ice on the car.  I reassure myself that soon I will be in South Africa’s sunny summer!

Let me introduce myself.  My name is Kelly.  Along with my husband Martin, we will be traveling with LoveLight to South Africa and leading a group of young adults, called International Youth Ambassadors, on their first trip to South Africa.  This is my and Martin’s seventh trip to South Africa.  We are also traveling with Robin, the founder of LoveLight, who has traveled to South Africa many times, and her husband Richard, who is going for the first time.

We travel to a small town about an hour and a half outside of Cape Town called Riviersonderend (which means River without End), and we do a youth camp there with high school kids.  The purpose of this camp is youth empowerment, building leadership skills and encouraging these teens to reach for higher goals in terms of education and vocational achievement.  Plus we throw in a healthy dose of spirituality (but not religion, they have plenty of religion already, and we do not interfere with that).

At the airport, we board the airplane and settle in for the first of our flights.  With me is Martin and Richard.  Robin will follow in a few days.  First stop, San Francisco, where we will have a layover and connect with our International Youth Ambassadors.

Then, we will fly to Zurich, Switzerland, where we will have a layover of a few hours, and then to Johannesburg, South Africa, and finally to Cape Town.  Travel time, including layovers, will be about 49 hours.

In my next post, I will introduce our International Youth Ambassadors, Griffin, Claire and Faith!