I am finally settled in! I arrived at my placement site in Nyirtelek on Thursday, September 13. I was greeted by Pastor Mihlay; his wife Panni; and Cata, a young woman who works at the church. They showed me to my lovely room and left me with the task of making the space feel like my home for the coming months. I quickly took heed to the challenge set before me and dumped everything out of my suitcase because I could not stand to live out of a piece of luggage any longer. I put my clothes into the huge closet and laughed at how little space they took up—just a tiny pile in the corner. After a nice dinner with Pastor Mihaly and Panni I settled in for the night, only to leave for Family Weekend in the morning. More traveling.
On Sunday, when we returned from Family Weekend, we jumped right back into the car and went to a dedication service for a church that is being built nearby. I was completely lost during the whole service, but I realized what was happening when we were sitting on a cement slab with no walls and people were holding up building supplies and saying prayers… Even though I didn’t understand it, it was a lovely service. I returned to the apartment that is supposed to be my home and tried to process what I had seen, heard (and didn’t understand), and felt over the weekend, but, overall, I still didn’t feel at home.
On Monday I went to the children’s house in Gorogszallas to play with the kids and try to talk to them…I failed. Yesterday, Pastor Mihlay and I spent all day in the immigration office in order to get my visa. Again, I had no idea what was being said around me. On the way home Pastor Mihaly and I stopped at the grocery store and I was able to get some much needed supplies for my apartment. I now have food! I have also upgraded from a travel-size to a normal-size bottle of shampoo; it’s really nice.
After I made dinner and took a shower with my new shampoo, I felt like I was finally home. It’s amazing how the small things, like bottles of shampoo, can make a big difference.
I still don’t have dish soap or clothes hangers and I desperately need to wash the little clothes I have, but the stress of living in a place that does not feel like my own is gone. The people here are very kind and I cannot wait until I can actually talk to them all, but for now, I am going to keep studying Hungarian and do laundry with my new detergent.