Martin Nov 2020 - Indonesia
We made our plans to arrive back in Indonesia before October 5, expecting to renew Amy's five-year visa before it expired. Unfortunately, like many other things recently, events did not exactly go as planned. The good news is that Amy was granted a visitor's visa without needing to leave the country. That visa can be extended through February 2021, with the hope of converting it over to a one-year visa before it expires. While the visitor's visa is more costly and more time-consuming to renew every month, we can say with a smile -"We're still here."
We have been back in Indonesia for just over one month, much of which has been spent in quarantine due to previous international travel, and "self isolation" for our upcoming village trip. While quarantine is not something we enjoy, we also do not want to be the ones to carry disease into an interior village with very limited medical care. In the meantime, we have been working from home and getting lots of house projects done.
Our good friends Brad and Susan arrived in Indonesia a couple of days after we did. Quarantine buddies are the best!
With our check lists in hand, we started shopping and preparing for our upcoming visit to the village of Kosarek.
We filled and taped up the boxes, and brought them to our local airport to be weighed.
We exchanged "big money" for "small money" to buy our fruits and veggies in the village. We also need enough small money as change to buy handmade string bags that are brought to our door on market day. One of the popular services we provide the community is to resell the bags in town to provide some profit to the ladies who weave them.
We just completed another test to prove we are free of COVID. (Didn't we just do this a month ago to come to Indonesia??!!)
Over the years, the task of going through the check lists, packing the boxes, and making sure all the "to-do" list is done before traveling has become a huge stressor for us. People often say, "You are probably really good at it by now." Honestly, it does not seem to get any easier. We "grin and bear it," doing it together because we know it is what needs to be done in order to finish what we started! We have also learned that we don't need everything we once thought of as a necessity. Our packing list has changed over the years, and our philosophy now is to not make life more complicated than it needs to be!
Our plan is to go into Kosarek on November 5. Lord willing, we will return to Sentani in the second week of December to continue working toward converting the visitor's visa into a one-year visa. Of course, we've all learned over the last 8 months or so, that plans may change! Stay tuned to see what plans the Lord has orchestrated for us. As the Lord wills, so be it!
We're thankful that...
Amy was able to get a visitor's visa which will allow her to stay in country through February.
We remain COVID-free and healthy.
Friends (who feel like family) are helping us through the early stages of empty-nesting.
Pray with us for...
Our 5 week stay in Kosarek.
Mike and his plans to finalize pre-publication testing for 1 Corinthians.
Amy as she comes alongside Adit and Putri to help in their ministry.
Our kids and their stressful college schedules in light of COVID restrictions.