Wednesday, August 02, 2006

M-I-S-S-I-S-S-I-P-P-I (Part II)

As I sit here valiantly trying to keep my eyes open at work (and having a very sleepy brain try to rationalize that it's ok to shut the door for a few minutes of shut-eye), I figure I'll let y'all know that I probably won't be blogging much for the next week-and-a-half or so. Our church choir is headed down to MS tonight. We'll spend about three days there with our adopted church, leading a crusade, doing some rebuilding work, and having another "block party" event to give people a little break from life. After that, we work our way back up to MD pretty slowly, with a day in FL, and a couple of days in GA.

VNB and I are riding the bus down with the rest of the crew, but will become the equipment truck drivers once we leave MS. That'll allow us to peel off from the main group on our way through NC. One of Ryan's high school friends is getting married on the 12th in his hometown. We'll finally make it home on the 13th just in time to unload the equipment truck.

Like the time around my birthday, this will be a very in-law-intensive time. My folks will be meeting us in MS (they should be arriving any time now, actually) and will be there with us, then we'll stay with his folks while we're in NC. That's not a bad thing at all...but still stressful since we're both still adjusting to all that married life entails.

But by far the biggest stressor for me is the bus ride down there. We'll be on a nice charter bus with a bathroom...but I've literally had nightmares about the trip - all 21-22 hours of it! My actual nightmare included things more like driving too fast and running into things, but I think my real fears have to do with adequate food (having the right thing to quench the cravings), and being sick. Next to that is the realization that just about everyone in the choir has known me for years and years....which means that they're going to be smothering me with worry and attention. While it's nice that they care.....well....that could be difficult for me who somehow managed to hide my pregnancy from them (despite the constant and sometimes overwhelming sickness) for most of three months. On the way back (when we're in the truck), my main fear is the need for pit stops. Since we're not staying with the group the whole way anyway, maybe it'll be ok for us to stop whenever we need to.....but maybe it won't.

The last fear was only cropped up last night. Until then, I hadn't hit that "always hot while pregnant" milestone. I was still my normal, cold-blooded self. Well, being outside in the heat doesn't really bother me that much (honestly), but I had serious trouble while at the maternity clothes outlet at the mall last night (ironic, huh?). I'm sure the mall's A/C was on power-save mode, but just all of the sudden, I was so hot I couldn't see straight. I quickly finished my business in the store and sat down on a bench in the walkway. After a few minutes, I thought I was cool enough to keep going....well, after walking a little further, I knew I wasn't. I was never actually light-headed or anything, just exhausted and overwhelmingly hot. After finishing all of my business in the mall, I sat in what was clearly (from my travels) the coolest spot available for probably 30 minutes. At the end of that time, I was actually almost chilled and did much better on my way out. But that, of course, brings up lots of fears about how I'm going to do in the early August heat and humidity of MS! We'll be outside a lot of our time there, sometimes doing relatively hot work (singing under lights, canvassing neighborhoods, clearing debris, etc.). It's gonna be hard!

And to think...when I signed up for this trip, I wasn't even married yet!

But it's going to be a great trip! I'm really looking forward to seeing everyone again, and to seeing how much progress has been made since I was there last. We'll also get a chance to actually go into downtown New Orleans to see what it's like there. I've never been there before, so I'll have nothing to compare it to, but I'm sure that the damage will be evident.

I probably won't be posting much, but if you'd like to follow along on our travels, check out my minister of music's new blog: He's promised to post daily updates.

Now I just have to figure out how to stay awake for the next 2.5 hours!

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