June 17, 2013 – Moving Day
Well, we have been moving in bits and pieces for the past three months. When we needed to be in Kiev for meetings or other reasons, we would take a load of items in and get them unpacked. On June 17th we did the big move – everything but a few items that were still essential for life and ministry through until the end of July.
How God works out the details is always something that amazes me. An arrangement had been made through a friend of ours with a fellow from a local church who regularly hauled goods to Kiev an points in between. When speaking with him a few days before, he assured us that he would have plenty of room on his truck for our stuff. So the plan was for him to arrive sometime between 11 & 12 a.m., so our stuff needed to be on the street and ready to go.
Monday morning, the girls and I all were awake just after 6 a.m. and set to work getting the final items prepared. Leanne and Daniel were in Kiev, and would wait for me to arrive that night. Our stuff would be arriving the next morning. At 9:55 a.m. the first two fellows arrived. Alicia went downstairs to watch our stuff, Lanae was upstairs giving directions, and I helped take stuff down. Soon there were twelve guys moving our stuff down the elevator or the five flights of stairs and setting it out on the street. This included our piano which they had to carry down the stairwell. I had agreed to moving it on two conditions: a) at least 8 fellows came to help move it b) there was an elevator large enough to carry it up to our apartment in Kiev. Both conditions were met, so down it went. Once it got there, Alicia sat down and serenaded the neighbourhood for over an hour playing a number of different pieces.
(here is a short video clip)
By 11 a.m. everything was sitting on the street, waiting for the truck. And sat. Until 2:30 p.m. The fellow had been delayed for a variety of reasons – such is life in Ukraine. In the meantime while we were standing there observing all the stuff sitting there, I had a strong feeling that it wasn’t going to fit. Alexei, one of the fellows helping us came up to me as I was pondering this dilemma and said “I’m not sure if this is all going to fit.” There is wisdom in counsel, and so I gave him the idea that had been taking shape in my thoughts. Load up the red van with as much small stuff as possible, and I drive it to Kiev. I wasn’t riding with the truck (I was going to take a bus in later that afternoon) and Leanne, Daniel & I were going to ride the train back the next day. Daniel had been in the Kiev area attending an mk camp and Leanne had already gone to Kiev to meet him. Alexei liked the idea and soon we had the van stuffed to the gills. I had room to sit and see the rearview mirror on the passenger’s side, and that was all.
So we sat, chatted, talked to the neighbours as they came back and forth and ate pizza that I ran to get for lunch. A few of the guys left, some went and came back and a number just hung around. God had blessed us with good weather, so it wasn’t too unpleasant a wait.
Finally, the truck showed up at 2:30 p.m. and we all jumped into action, as he had to get to another city down the road to pick up a delivery by 6:00 p.m. The driver opened the back of the truck and we looked into the empty cavern and thought, “Excellent!, Lots of space.” Then he gave us the “good news”. “You can only load up to this line (indicating a mark on the truckbed). I need the rest of the space for the load I need to pick up.”
When we finished loading everything that was sitting there on the street, it came right up to the line. Praise God that He had given us the idea of loading the van first. So everything was loaded up, and off went the truck with the driver and one of the fellows from our church. I hopped into the red van and left for Kiev. 4.5 hrs later I pulled into our apartment parking lot. The road had been quiet and amazingly, the worst potholes had just been fixed so I was able to make better time than usual. Thankfully the traffic police were merciful that day and let me continue to travel without the usual “stop and question” routine.
So I arrived and Daniel and a couple of fellows we knew came and helped me to unload the van. The next morning four strong young fellows came and helped us unload the truck. In no time at all everything was up and in the apartment. What a mess . But thankfully, that part was finished.
I wasn’t thinking about much about photos – there were a number of opportunities that should have been caught on film but the memories are good. We are thankful. It was a difficult day for us all, for this brought home the reality that we were moving and that this would not be home (at least not as it was) ever again. But God is good, and we are thankful for the years we had which we never expected or planned on and the opportunities and relationships that He has given us.
Talk to you later,