Tuesday the 2nd April arrives at 5am and I weep silently into my pillow. We head down into the lobby after hasty showers – my throat is still burning from the cup of tea I unwisely downed in the sad hope that a bit of caffeine might bring me to life.
It’s when we are gathered in the lobby that we receive the unfortunate news of Luce’s illness. She has to remain behind, tragically, while the rest of us head to the airport, via the criminal taxi service that leaves with empty seats so that they can charge for two trips, for our 7:20 flight from Edinburgh to Prague. We manage to check in (or Czech in, as somebody wittily remarked) and get through security without too much fuss. There was a bit of a hold-up involving an unnamed team member and a bag of toiletries, but aside from that we made it to our terminal with time to spare.
The two hour flight passes quickly, many of us catching up on the previous night’s sleep-deficit by snoozing the hours away. Another half-hour bus ride takes us to the train station in Prague, where we have rather a lot of time to kill. Fortunately, Burger King is an international franchise, and happens to be present at the station. Ordering ten meals takes rather a lot of time, even being blessed with a server who speaks remarkably good English, but still not quite enough time for our train to have arrived.
So we wile away the time in the restaurant, before clumsily extricating ourselves and our many items of luggage from amongst the chairs and heading to platform 6S for our train. They have double-decker trains! But ours isn’t one of them, sadly. It takes two and a half hours, but we finally arrive in Chomutov, at around 4pm.
We are met promptly by Martin, Ulga and Hanna, who take us to the church where we are staying. We dump our belongings, and spend some time introducing ourselves and meeting the Pastor of the church. While talking with Martin and the others we realise that many of our plans may not be viable, so some of the evening is spent trying to rearrange and reorganise what we are going to do (staying F.A.T. – Flexibly, Available and Teachable). The rest of the evening sees the purchasing of bread, ham and some delicious garlic butter stuff for dinner, and some relax time. After some more team prayer time, for Luce, as well as other things, we head to bed.
Reporting from Jacob