Posted by: Leap of Faith | August 19, 2006

Finally reunited!


After months of waiting my family is finally here! 

My five days in Manila was really hectic.  The day I arrived was Rafael’s sixth birthday.  Pinky and my mom tried to fool the boys by blindfolding them to the airport – ala Pinoy Big Brother daw.  I think the boys thought they were going to some remote place in the Philippines – not sure what the script was.  Anyway, knowing those boys, I think it was Pinky and my mom who were being taken for a ride! 

We had a simple dinner that night in a new Japanese resto in ATC.  I forgot the name but it was really yummy.  Rafael got a free birthday ice cream with a single magic candle.  I’m sure to my sons, the candle was definetley the highlight for that night. 

The real party was on 12Aug06.  We invited a few of our closest relatives and friends to TGIF in ATC.  It was a very touching moment for us.  The boys enjoyed the party but Pinky and I enjoyed mingling with our family and friends, whom we will be missing for the next year.  Marga, our baby, was definietly confused with all the commotion. 

The next few days was just chaotic.  Fixing papers and packing stuff!  Whew!  Thank God we had family members to help us do all that.  If not for all of them, we would still be in Manila doing all those stuff.

Aug 16 was “the day.”  Pinky wasn’t sure if she was excited or not.  The boys were likewise confused.  Luigi was excited but Rafael seemed indifferent.  Shocks!  Hope those are not warning signals. It was a very tearful moment.  We had a family prayer before we left.  Pippo, Mike and Lor, Ayn, Mom, Alyssa, Rose and Leilah (our trusted househelps) were all there with us.  I had to stop during the prayer since my voice was starting to crack.  Pinky had to take over.  Tears were starting to flow and every one was getting emotional.  It’s nice to know that you always have family to back you up especially when there are difficult decisions that you have to make.  Papa and Mama were in the US but knowing them it would have been another emotional moment if they were around.

The difficulty of travelling with family soon sinked in.  Four luggages and a million handcarrys were all we brought – not that many unless you need to carry everything yourself!  

As expected, we had to check-in through the “excess luggage”  lane.  My mind was trying to do a mental computation of how much $$$$ I had to pay.  Surprisingly, the lady in the counter said that we didn’t have to pay any excess luggage fees but may have to unload a few stuff for our handcarry.  Wow! Pinky and I couldn’t believe it.  Definitely God’s hand working again for us.

The flight was pretty uneventful.  The children were very behave.  Marga had difficulty sleeping in the bassinet but slept like a log when carried.  That was perfectly fine by me.  I missed here so much.

We slept overnight in Bahrain and flew to Dammam early the following day.  Again, God was opening the gates for us.  The immigration and customs officials did not give us a hard time.  No one questioned why we brought Mercury Drugstore to KSA!  I was expecting major harrassment from customs officials since we had to bring so many medicines for the children.  Rafael’s asthma medicine almost filled one whole bag!  Anyway, we were pleasantly surprised by that development.

My friends, Frank, Josie and Ton, took time to pick us up in the airport even at with my late notice.  I was originally planning to just take the airport bus. But after travelling for more than ten hours and carrying all those luggages, the offer of my friends seemed to difficult to resist.

I was planning to rent a car over the weekend to allow me to bring my family around.  It was expensive but we really had no choice.  When we were entering the rent-a-car office, my phone rang and it was the car dealer advising me that my car was already available for pick-up!  Perfect timing.  Luck?  Nope, God’s hand again.

The whole trip was truly amazing.  We could definitely feel God’s presence with everyone we encountered – from our family back in Manila to the Saudi officials to our friends offering to pick us up to getting the car just in time.

God has opened this opportunity for us and He is really affirming this through our own personal experiences.  I am still not sure what God’s plan is for my family but I am looking forward to knowing it as He gradually unfolds it to us. 

Now, our adventure begins.

 

 

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