The Joys of Blogging

Marc and I have been discussing recently how even though we enjoy writing for all of you who read here, our blog is mainly for us (and our families of course). We have had our blog for just over two years now and we quite enjoy going back in our archives. I was just looking at what we were up to last year at this time. We were just getting into the swing of things in Kapsowar, feeling more normal and saying goodbye to the first Sudanese interns. Marc has this extremely informative, well written post about our friends Ajack and Jacob that was penned a year ago this week. Two years ago I was having major laundry issues, thankfully I have progressed in this area and have moved beyond laundry meltdowns. There are so many small experiences that we have that get lost in our memory abyss as time passes and our blog has really helped us to remember small details and experiences and to see where our thought process was at.

Through the advent of technology our future children and grandchildren and beyond will have the ability to go back and read and see what their grandparents were up to. (That is unless some new supertechnology comes about that renders the internet useless). I have seen very few pictures of my great grandparents and while I have many more of my grandparents I do not have access to their personal writings. If I had the opportunity to read and see what they were thinking and doing I would be quite interested as it would give an insight into popular culture at the time as well as help me get to know them a better.

So ....Hello future grandchildren! I hope you think Grandpa and I are hip and cool and you really wish you could have known us when we were younger. However, Grandma thinks you should unjack your brain from the consul and jump back into reality! ;)


Mormons Exposed!!!

Oh dear! I came across this today while surfing the internet (don't worry my faithful readers a naughty search was not done to find Mr. March) but for those of you who have grown up in southern Alberta you might be a bit shocked to see the clean cut missionary on the left morph into full fledged sultry poster boy on the right. The site is mormons exposed and let me tell you, I have never seen missionaries like these!!! I think the LDS church should reconsider their policy on shirts and ties for their missionaries if they want more converts. ;)


home slightly bitter home

i suppose we are now officially home in chilliwack: we are no longer camping in our house, kylie has signed up for tahitian dance lessons and i have just finished my first day of work. the fraser valley welcomed us with a few sunny days before the rains set in again, only to retreat gloriously in the face of one of the most beautiful spring saturdays i can remember.
4x4ing, quadding and generally having a redneck good time down by the river

one day while still in kenya i flipped through some books at the AIM library in nairobi (while we were waiting ALL AFTERNOON for our passports to be returned to us) regarding "reentry" into the western world after working in the developing world. we thought it was a bit overstated but were forewarned. travelling across the middle east, we heard a lot about reverse culture shock, but with kylie pining for canadian conversation and me excited about mountain biking in the BC summer we thought it didnt apply to us.

finally during our time in europe, staying with good friends in holland, germany, norway and england we thought we MUST be minimizing our adjustment by slowly reengaging with western culture. i remember picking up our friend aaron straight off the plane from taiwan and having him stare at us in bewilderment when we asked him simple questions. he claimed that he was continually surprised that we (and the local shopkeepers) weren't speaking chinese.
note the army pants. i am not alone.

when we arrived in lethbridge we congratulated ourselves on avoiding the worst of reverse culture shock... mainly we noticed how nice, helpful and considerately conversational canadians were. kylie and marc, the intrepid backpackers, able to adjust to new cultures in a single plane ride. boy were we wrong.

i think to our minds, lethbridge and edmonton where just extensions of our time in europe. staying at people's houses and talking and going for walks; not too difficult. the first odd feelings came when we were nearing revelstoke to pick up niko.
niko with his old roommates and the new revelstoke resort in the background

despite all the anticipation and time spent missing and reminiscing, as we approached revelstoke both kylie and i started to feel extremely nervous. i almost suggested going out for coffee in town before picking him up. perhaps this was partially b/c we were unsure of how he would react to us. we neednt have worried on that front though: he came barrelling through the door and couldnt stop running back and forth between us to say hi. after the initial excitement wore off he literally stuck by our side. his head was continually pressed against me or kylie's leg for as long as we were in the appt. the next morning he was sitting at our bedroom door to greet me, followed me around the living room and settled against the bathroom door while i got ready. he then proceeded to step back into life in chilliwack like he never left.

the next morning we left for chilliwack, and after an enjoyable interlude with our cousin nevin and his miracle kid katie in kamploops, we set across the coquihala to the fraser valley. again, as we passed through hope, kylie and i each felt knots forming in our stomachs. arriving in the fraser valley created a strange nervous feeling that only intensified as we drove into chilliwack and down beautiful airport drive to our house (the road is lined with japanese plum trees that had blossomed just for us).

we relaxed a bit once we had unloaded the 4runner into our home and our renters had finally left (albeit without moving out of the kitchen!) but still every foray into our old lives recreated the same strange hair raising panicky feeling. we felt very wierd about going to church for the first time and almost turned around and left in the parking lot. even going to reconnect with our good friends ang and chad was disconcerting (until we got there).

the whole strangeness climaxed for me at safeway. we went to pick up toothpaste and garbage bags; armed with clear goals in the task ahead i marched confidently into the dental aisle only to be confronted with almost a hundred options for a standard sized tube of toothpaste. i just about had a panic attack. if it wasnt for kylie standing behind me i think i might have bolted and subjected everyone to my unbrushed breath.

anyways, now we are more used to canada, and i actually DIDNT feel all those crazy things when i went to the hospital this morning, which is a very good thing. i actually quite enjoyed the day and am looking forward to tomorrow (although i hope i get home before 7:00).

we are also enjoying exploring our old haunts. i have had 2 great rides on vedder and we have met some old friends at our favourite off leash area.

so. i know we have no reason to complain, we just got back from 4 months of no schedule and responsibilities and poor marc has to go back to work when he would rather head to malaysia to see ty and kelsey. i enjoyed the challenge today at the office and both of us are looking forward to a summer of good times with good friends in a great place. home sweet home.


We have not fallen off the face of the earth . . .

We have just been busy and have not had internet for the past 10 days. We are back in Chilliwack with Niko and slowly settling into our old lives. After not having culture shock at all in Lethbridge we thought we had missed that phase of our journey. Sadly we were both mistaken and have been a bit overwhelmed after coming home. We are happy to be back though and had a great time slowly making our way to Chilliwack through Alberta.

Marc is feeling quite overwhelmed as I said. I am quite worried about him. Any ideas as to why his eyes have swollen so large?

We first stayed in Lethbridge with our parents. We celebrated "Christmas" on Good Friday with my family. Is it sacreligious to celebrate the birth and death of Jesus on the same day?

Here we are in front of our tree displaying our Easter eggs from our hunt.
Marc and my brother showing off their army pants. I am ashamed to admit that we bought these pants for Brad and like his brother in law he also now has a very difficult time taking them off. Grrrr!

Marc packing the car. He did manage to get everything in (quite a feat!) but we did have to buy a Thule box so that we could fit Niko in the back with all the rest of our stuff. We then headed up to Edmonton and stayed with these two for a couple of days:
Had a great surprise shower for Carlynne!
Marc went bungee jumping (see post below.) Here is Jarrid helping him down. I really like the colours in this picture.
We went for a walk with our friends Brad and Vicky and their dogs Zoe and Capone.
Then we went to pick up our puppy in Revelstoke. He was really happy to see us and it seemed like no time had passed, except that he behaves like an adult dog! I highly recommend the route of going away for a year when your dog is 2 and leaving him with a dog trainer!

Right now we are too busy putting away boxes to have taken any pictures. We are also in the process of purging because we have A LOT of stuff. Living overseas for a year and then out of a backpack has made us realize we have an excessive amount of possessions and we need to get rid of them! Pictures of Chilliwack to come soon.