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The Legacy of Joseph Barnabas in Cyprus

Paul's mentor and missionary traveling companion

Home for Christmas

December 25th, 2011

We had a long flight back to Pennsylvania. After maybe an hour of sleep, we got up at midnight on December 21 so as to be ready when our cab driver arrived at 1:00 AM. He took us to the the airport, where Lufthansa ripped us off royally on baggage costs. We learned that they have a strict weight limit for carry-on baggage (8 kilos). Lynne’s little suitcase fits easily in the overhead bins, but it was too heavy. “That will be 100 Euro extra. You will need to check your carry-on.”

We were expecting to pay $100 for our two extra suitcases, but we got stung with 210 Euros. When you do the math on currency conversion, that comes out to around $273. I used to like Lufthansa.

After a six-hour layover in Frankfurt, we boarded our jet–and sat there for two and a half hours. There was some problem with the fuel gauge. So we missed our connecting flight from Philadelphia to Harrisburg. Fortunately, we were placed on a later flight and got into Harrisburg about 9:15 PM. Our children picked us up at the airport and drove us home, where they had waiting a dinner of ham and potatoes. We got to bed at midnight PA time. After being up for about 30 hours with only small naps on the jets, we slept very soundly in our own bed. Nice to be home!

No time to loaf, however. We had many things to do in preparation for Christmas. This afternoon, we will have a houseful of family and friends for Christmas dinner. Lynne is in the kitchen, busy preparing all the food.

Last night we attended a Christmas Eve service at our church. I could not help but compare the service to the midnight Christmas liturgy that the Orthodox Christians of Cyprus attended. The contrast in style, format and content is amazing.

We are learning to drive on the right hand side of the road again. We are enjoying the quiet of Grantham village. We love seeing our friends. And we have difficulty boiling down four months of experiences in Cyprus to soundbites when asked, “How was your time in Cyprus?”

Have a merry Christmas.

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