Yesterday was our third “Tanziversary”–the anniversary of our arrival in Tanzania. It’s hard to believe that it’s been three years already, but these three years have been packed full of lots of fun adventures, new challenges and great memories as a family!
To make the trip with two not-yet one-year-olds, I enlisted the help of my mom and sister Carla (and most of this 5 Photo Friday’s photos were taken by her).
Even with the help of mom and Carla, I was still a bit frazzled when we arrived at Kilimanjaro International Airport at about 9 pm after a good 30 hours of air travel. We departed Baltimore in the morning, met up with mom and Carla in Minneapolis, then went to Amsterdam and then finally boarded a flight to Tanzania. Fortunately, upon our arrival, an immigration officer came to assist us with processing our visas so we didn’t have to stand in line. While I was digging through my bag to find the paperwork, there was tap on my shoulder. I turned around to see it was Kakasii! (Those of you who know him well won’t be surprised that he had managed to charm his way into a secure area of the airport.)
So there in the International Arrivals lounge of Kilimanjaro International Airport, Kakasii got to meet Max and Elly face-to-face for the first time, 11-1/2 months after they were born in Baltimore.
Once we processed all of our immigration documents and gathered our luggage, we exited the airport to find a huge welcoming committee of Kakasii’s friends and family waiting to greet us.
My mom and Carla stayed in Tanzania with us for the first couple of weeks and we enjoyed two significant milestones with them: Max and Elly’s first safari, and Max and Elly’s baptism.
I’m grateful that Max and Elly really have flourished these last three years. They love Tanzanian food, are fluent in Swahili and English, and both have an insatiable desire to explore their surroundings (especially Max, who tells me at least once a day he wants to ride his bike far away from our house to go see his friends).
Here’s to three more years, or maybe even 33 more years!