Monday, June 9, 2014
Passport Scare - Traveling With Kids in Kenya
So we had a little passport scare today. Dr. J had put this pouch in his pocket that had his passport, debit card, and the last of our 2000 shillings before he headed back up to work after lunch. We think he was planning on getting some more money from the bank because friends let me tell you, shillings go pretty fast here, but when he got back from the hospital he realized he didn't have the pouch on him. We looked around the house and then he headed back up to the hospital to see if by chance it had fallen out there or along the way. I think both of us were feeling a little frantic about the whole thing. The shilling thing was not so bad, I mean after all we are talking about less than $30. The bank card wasn't great, but we knew we could cancel it, and it actually expires at the end of this month so we were already going to be down to just my debit card anyway. The real stress point was the passport. I have no idea how you get a new passport if you lose yours and the internet has been down for two days so it wasn't like I could even check. Do you have to go to a US embassy? (Just in case anyone is interested, here is what you have to do.) If so that would be in Nairobi, and how do you get to Nairobi without your passport? Dr. J was praying on his way up to the hospital. I went into our room with the kids and had a prayer after he left. Then I walked down to Michael's guard shack to wait for Dr. J. I haven't set up a phone here, we totally have two with us but I just haven't bothered to get a card or money on mine because so for there hasn't been any reason to. While for the most part I don't mind, I mean after all this is a choice I made, at this moment I wanted prompt news on what was or wasn't found. He was gone for a long time and when he finally got back he had no passport. We hugged each other, both said we were sorry, and walked off hand in hand to get the bank number to tell them to cancel the card. It was at this moment that Dr. J was putting some stuff down on the table and I was looking into our downstairs bathroom, and then I shrieked, because there on the window seal of the bathroom was the pouch with the passport, money, and card. We both did a little happy dance and then went upstairs with the kids to say a prayer of thanks. Maybe this was just poor planning, bad memories, messy housekeeping, or maybe it was the will of God. Dr. J told me after our prayer that when he went to his ward to see if by chance he'd dropped the pouch there that one of his patients was having a seizure and there was no one around to help him. Dr. J was able to stay and get him stabilized before he returned home. As I'm sitting here typing this Dr. J said to me, "While I was walking and praying I said to God, I don't know if I'm going to find my passport or not, but if there is some reason that I need to go back to hospital right now please let me know what it is." Originally today we'd planned on using that time to go to the mall and pick out some birthday presents for the kids. I think it was OK that that got pushed off a little and I'm really glad that Dr. J was able to be there for his patient when he needed him. I'm also glad I don't have to find out first hand how to get a new passport when out of the country.