Au Revoir

Parting is such sweet sorrow. We said TTFN to our 10 Rwandan students last Thursday, including Alain!

We had no word on whether he made it, until this morning (Mon) when Alain tried to Skype us. We missed him.:-(

Apparently he made it to Rwanda. No word yet on whether all of his stuff got there.

The days before he left were a flurry of shopping and packing. Many trips to WalMart, Best Buy, The Apple Store, WalMart, Radio Shack, WalMart, oh, and WalMart. Throw in the bank, and a few other stops and we had a pretty busy week.

When I was tempted to be grumpy about all of that running around, I just remembered that he was buying NONE of that for himself. He was buying cool things for his family who put him on a plane two years ago to go get his college education in America!

Contrast this to what I observed the day we moved him out of the dorm and to our house before the trip home to Rwanda. I noticed a guy digging through the dumpsters, and was intrigued (nosy) enough to ask him what he was doing. "Are you "freeganing" or did you lose something?

He didn't want the word to get out, so I said I'd try to protect his secret, but apparently dumpster diving outside of dorms at the end of a school year is some pretty great fishing. Clothes. Expensive shoes. Furniture. Sunglasses. Laundry soap (that he gave me!). School supplies ... all tossed in the garbage ... these guys couldn't even bother with donating their junk to the needy. Spoiled American college brats was my thought! Sorry. It's true, no?

Alain scraped together the money he earned at the "caf" (eteria) to get a computer (macbook, good boy), digital camera, video camera and all of the related cards, cords, batteries and power adaptors to give his family. We added to that MP3s, Giles' gamecube system and games that he relinquished to Alain's brothers, jewelry and pictures.

The night before he left, I asked him what he would like for dinner. Had it been me, I definitely would have hinted strongly for steak or lobster. My kids would have begged for pizza! He wanted beans! He'd be getting the real thing from his mama in just a few days, but he still asked for it. So we made beans and sweet potatoes and fried plaintain. A meal that cost about $1.87! And leftovers before the airport the next morning.

Amidst all of that packing and anticipation, would you believe that boy, and his friend, Placide, gave me Mother's Day cards?!

Love them. Miss them. See you in August!