Wednesday, November 13, 2013
THE CITIES : BRAZZAVILLE, CONGO
My time in the CAR came to an end. I said goodbye to the church members. As I and another American missionary, Andrew, were saying goodbye to all the kids in the neighborhood, they approached us, a few at a time, and gave us hugs or kisses or just giggled, covering their mouths with a hand.
Their crowd dwindled to an end and a little girl who'd always go into hysterics when she saw us, came into view. She couldn't see what was going on from the back. Suddenly meeting us face to face was too much: she struggled with her terror for a few moments and then started to cry, as usual. Andrew, picked her up and held her until she quieted down. It was a good finish for our time in the Central African Republic.
I told everyone that, going by Fula-Fula (the truck) was a great experience, which I never want to repeat. I bought a ticket for a plane. The strange thing was, the planes didn't go straight from the CAR to Zaire. I had to fly into Congo, located across the river by the same name from Zaire and then take a ferry to Kinshasa.
The plane arrived into Brazzaville airport late at night. Nobody was meeting me there. At a luggage carousel a white and extremely blonde lady in skintight clothes, bulging in all the wrong places, was cursing in Russian as she kept on grabbing someone else's suitcases, while her African husband stood by and smiled apologetically. When I tried to calm her down in the language common to both of us, she almost blew my head off with a good dose of Russian swear words!
The leader in the CAR gave me a penciled map that was supposed to help me find the church center in Brazzaville. I gave it to a taxi driver, but it didn't seem to do the trick. We drove around and around the, obviously, poor and noisy area of the city,
but, since I didn't understand the language, I didn't know if we were close to locating the place or not. He stopped the car and opened the door to go out. I was really afraid to stay alone in the vehicle in the middle of, what seemed to be, a wild party in the neighborhood, so I trudged after him. We came to a small house, looking exactly like the others and the driver knocked on the door. In French, he asked, if this was the Unification Church center. I heard them say "Oui, oui," and my heart felt just overflowing with great happiness at finding my brothers and sisters and getting out of danger. There was something special about that reunion (I call it that even though I never met any of them in my life): nobody wanted to go to sleep and all of us felt uplifted and inspired, like we were walking on clouds.
I rarely had this kind of feelings, meeting my own family!