Thursday, January 26, 2006

Missing in France

It has been a frantic 24 hours!

Yesterday afternoon we discovered that our passports had gone astray in the French mail system. Even though they were sent registered mail from the UK, we have been told they cannot be traced.

From the beginning of the week we had been getting a little concerned that our passports had not been sent back to us from the Burkina Faso embassy in Paris. We had sent them there to get visas for Burkina stamped in them about three weeks ago. Apparently, the Burkina Faso embassy never received our passports, and Royal Mail can do nothing to locate them.

After a restless night, and a flurry of phone calls and activity today, we are happy to report that we have be able to obtain new passports, and after adjusting our flights plans slightly, we are still on schedule to leave Northern Ireland on Monday for West Africa.

However, we will no longer be able to go to Ivory Coast to get our truck, (we lost the Ivory Coast visas in the old passports). So, we have cancelled the flights to Abidjan, and have purchased new tickets to Burkina. We can obtain visas for Burkina at the airport when we arrive. The travel agent informed us that we should get a refund on the original tickets from Air France within a couple of months.

We will not now have access to our truck, so we will need to purchase a vehicle when we get to Burkina Faso. Maybe at a later date we will be able to get our truck out of Ivory Coast.

We know the Lord has some purpose in all of this, and we are resting in the fact that He knows what is best for us.

One positive outcome of the situation is the fact that we get to spend a couple of nights in Paris as we await the flight to Ouagadougou in Burkina. It’s cheaper to do that, than buy new tickets for the Belfast-Paris leg of the journey.

Lord willing, we will fly to Burkina on Thursday, February 2.

Proverbs 16:9 A man's heart deviseth his way: but the LORD directeth his steps.