In September, Noel was in the states for simulator training and brought his parents back with him. The kids and I anxiously awaited their arrival. The wait seemed extra long as we mistakenly thought they were on the early morning flight. Finally at 6:00, they arrived at our house tired from the long journey and the crazy Kabul traffic. Winter graciously gave up her room to the grandparents and bunked in David’s room. We had even found some Afghan appropriate clothes that Nana could wear while she was here.
Their two weeks flew by fast. We took them to school, big meeting, the airport, on a flight with Noel, to chicken street shopping, and even to lunch at the bowling alley. We let them rest but also put them to work. They played monopoly deal with the kids and helped Teresa celebrate her birthday. Papaw was even able to be a part of a father-son birthday party while the girls had a movie night.
Sometimes shopping here can be a little overwhelming. So Teresa decided that she would ask a couple of ladies to come and show their embroidery and such to Nana at our house. Much to our surprise four ladies showed up. For two hours, Nana looked over their wares while Teresa translated. The ladies drank tea and ate nuts as Nana pondered what she should buy and for whom. By the end of the afternoon, Nana had chosen some gifts for friends and family back home and the women went home with a little money in their pockets. Here is a picture of Nana and the ladies.
One day the parents went with Noel on a flight to La’l and then had lunch at the airport. Noel then put them to work helping complete inventory. Papaw ended up going again the next day to finish the job with one of national employees. This work saved Noel many hours as the end of the fiscal year came to a close.
Two or three days, Nana and Papaw went to school with Teresa. Nana helped with first grade and also with some grading and other work for Teresa’s classes. Papaw helped with some filing in the admin office. One afternoon Papaw talked to Teresa’s consumer math class about business. The students were quiet as they listened to him talk and enjoyed asking him questions. The next day the students were asked to write about what they learned. Here are a few of their comments.
“What I found interesting about him was the fact that he runs his business in a way that provides him money and a happiness that he gets from his clients.”
“The thing I learned from him is business is not always about making money.”
“…and he goes to sleep with no tensions got me interested because he has no worries in his job. I want to have no worries like him too in the future.”
It was so good to have them around for a two weeks and to be a part of our lives here. Thank you Nana and Papaw for the gift of your visit.