Like pretty much every blog I have started, I start this blog in order to procrastinate something for school. I'll update a little bit before I leave as important stuff happens (shopping for mission stuff, getting my visa, etc), but all the interesting stuff will happen once I leave.
To sum up what has already happened, I received my call on September 28. When I read it, no one knew where it was (in their defense, I pronounced both country and city wrong). Even now, more than a month later, only a few people I have told already knew anything about the countries. I applied for a passport about a week later, which I received after 10 days. This was shocking to me as I did not expedite it. I guess that with all the riots and protests and such going on around the world these days (which, if you ever need some noise to fall asleep to, you should ask me about), Americans are not very eager to begin travelling abroad if they haven't already done so. I sent in my passport and all the visa paperwork to the missionary travel department for them to do their stuff with (so that the countries know that I'm a missionary and not just a tourist), and I'm waiting to hear back on that. Should the passports come in soon, there is a slight chance that I might be asked to leave early, but I don't find it too likely.
I have already gotten all of the required immunizations. I was very surprised, I had always heard that traveling to Africa required a lot of immunizations, but I only had to get vaccinated for Yellow Fever and Typhoid. I guess it just means that my parents kept me up to date on my vaccines while I was growing up, which I'm thankful for. Of course, there are all sorts of strange illnesses in Africa that can't be vaccinated against (malaria and dengue fever, for starters), so I will have to be careful. I'm still in the process of looking for a mosquito net with repellent.
Well, I think that is enough to start. Next time I'll talk about the preparations with school. I will probably also post little interesting blurbs that I find out about Benin (pronounced "beneen") and Togo. So there might actually be a fair number of posts even before I go. In fact, here's the first blurb: Benin was known as Dahomey until the early 1990s, reflecting it's precolonial history as a part of the kingdom of the same name. I'm not sure why they chose to switch it to Benin.