Steve’s Travel Diary 3: “I’m Coming”

Hi Everyone,

If I told you that I would meet you on the other side and when and when you got to the other side I wasn’t there and after about 30 minutes you asked a policeman to call me and ask where I was and when I was coming and I told the policeman said, “I’m coming.” What would that communicate to you? It is different here, I think.

It was a fairly short night. I was awake at 4:15, got to the airport just before 7am for a 9:30am flight. We boarded early and arrived early at our destination, Kisumu, Kenya; less than an hour in the air. Tom Ogalo, ITEM team member who lives there, picked me up and we headed to the border of Kenya and Uganda where I’ll meet with our teams from both countries tomorrow.

It is the trade route between the two countries so there are a lot of big commercial trucks heading in both directions. But today there were fewer than normal and the trip was quicker than normal. It is about 75 miles and took a little over two hours. I took many pictures along the way and uploaded them to the photo album. There are some interesting ones. Check them out.

At the border, I had to pass by Kenya immigration to “leave” Kenya and walk 20 feet to secure my visa for entering Uganda.

Tom, my driver, was driving a vehicle that is registered to an organization he is a part of in Kenya. So he dropped me at immigration and told me, “I’ll meet you ‘on the other side.’” So, I did my thing at the two immigration windows. Interestingly, Uganda immigration didn’t ask for a covid test result nor did they ask for proof of covid immunization even though the website says you need one or the other. Now that I think of it, Kenya airways requires masks on their planes but I saw a flight attendant with his nose only partially covered and a passenger sleeping with his mask down around his chin and no one said anything. But I digress.

So, I cleared immigration and walked out “on the other side.” No Tom. I walked up the street on “the other side,” no Tom. I was told by a policeman to wait for him back at immigration. So, I walked back and waited. No Tom. Then a helpful policeman asked if I had contact information. I gave him Tom’s phone number. He called Tom and Tom’s answer was, “Tell him (me) I’m coming.”

What does “I’m coming man to you?” I think it would normally mean, “I’ll be there very soon. I’m on my way.” I should have known better. I learned early on when in Africa, “I’m coming” may well mean, “I’ll be there eventually.” In this case, “I’m coming meant eventually” and “eventually ended up being 90 minutes! I was just about to start calling others on the team that reside in the area when Tom showed up. As it turned out, he had to jump through some legal “hoops” to show that he was not stealing the car he was driving from the org that owned it. What is funny is that he is the secretary of the org.

But we made it…..“eventually!”

Tonight we are going to the home of Jim and Amber Glasscock, ITEM missionaries stationed here in Busia, Uganda for dinner. This is where Hillary Wafula, ITEM coordinator, also lives. I’ll put some pictures of the family in the album also. They have had a series of health issues. Jim has had malaria more than once.


Tuesday will begin with me going to get tested for covid. I’ll be moving on to Rwanda Thursday and they still require a negative covid report to enter the country. After that I will spend some time with our teams. I want to hear from them and have them hear from each other. We’ll also be doing some vision casting.

Youth Meeting Has Been Added

I have been planning on meeting with youth in Liberia when I am there and as I was leaving the US, I reached out to Hillary and said, “Hey, we have Tuesday eve open. Do you want to set up a youth meeting at your church?” No answer….. until today. I was just told it has been set up and there will be both youth and adults. They were told I would be ready to answer the hard questions about Christianity. 😊 PRAY FOR ME! I by no means have all of the answers!! But it should be fun!

Well, that is it for today. Look for pictures of my trip and the Glasscock in the album. They are not there yet but hope to have them up by noon Pacific.

Pray for the meetings tomorrow. Pray that the teams will be encouraged. Pray that the time in the evening at Hillary’s church will be helpful and that I’ll gain experience in “doing apologetics.” Pray for good night’s sleep for me.


By His grace,

CLICK HERE to see pictures added today.

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