As I reflect back on each of my blog posts, I realize that in some way or another Andrew and I experience a miracle everyday.
Kaveto has been a wonderful host to us over the past three days and we are so grateful that he let us stay in his “makeshift” couchsurfing room, a little mattress situated at the top of the stairs. Unfortunately, today he has another couchsurfer coming in to stay with him, so we will have to pivot to another place to stay. Andrew has worked his magic with couchsurfing since we have been here in Africa, and we already have another place lined out to stay with some girls in a nearby neighborhood how also participate in couchsurfing.
When we were walking with Kaveto and his friends to the coffee shop last evening, we passed right by the LDS church, only minutes away from his home. That experience made this mornings walk to church very simple.
We arrived at the meetinghouse around 8:30am, prepared to attend the 9:00am session. We always arrive early because we like to meet as many people in the ward as possible. Sacrament meeting was wonderful and it was bittersweet partaking of the sacrament for the last time here in Africa (at least the last time in a while). We have really come to love the people of this continent, especially the church members.
As Andrew and I were searching for the right Sunday School class to attend, I think the members of the ward thought we were just friends because they quickly brought us to the YSA class in the top part of the building. Looking back now, I realize we were in that class because God wanted to shower us with even more miracles. Although we had another place to stay in the town, we were becoming tired of moving our stuff on public transport and staying on people’s extra mattresses (without a room). In the YSA class was a brother and sister from Cape Town named Ryno and Kari. Just a few months ago they completed a four-month backpacking trip of America, exploring way more places than Andrew and I ever have.
We spoke with them briefly before class, and afterwards Ryno took Andrew to priesthood and Kari took me to relief society. When both our classes were finished Andrew and I had both become very good friends with Ryno and Kari. Once again God blessed us with a little miracle, and Ryno offered to let us stay our last few days in Cape Town with them and their parents. They offered to take us in their car to their home after church and give us lifts into the city when we needed them. Are you serious?
I have never met such a wonderful family. The entire ride home Kari, Ryno, Andrew, and I discussed our adventures through the USA and Africa. We all found it funny that we are from America, yet they have seen more of our country, and they are from Africa, yet we have seen more of their continent. Ryno really wants to backpack China as his next trip, and Kari wants to backpack India, so we also spent quite a bit of time talking about that.
The Kruger family decided to take us on the scenic route home, taking us past the famous Table Mountain photo point, the wind surfing beach, and through the beautiful winelands. When we arrived at their home, we were blown away by the beautiful souvenirs they have collected from around the world, as well as the wonderful spirit that we felt the moment we walked in the door.
They showed us to their beautiful guest room, took all our dirty clothes and washed them for us, and even prepared a traditional South African meal for us. After we spent the afternoon exchanging stories and laughing, we helped them prepare for the arrival of the missionaries. The Kruger family has the missionaries over every Sunday evening at 7:00pm (they call it the Kruger Commandment). We enjoyed chatting with the missionaries and eating some more delicious South African food.
When it was time to go to bed, Betsy (the mother of the family) boiled water, poured it in several rubber water bottles, and placed one inside the beds of each of her children (including Andrew and I) as she now considers us her children. I have never slept so well in my life. South Africa winters are cold, but in a place like this I could live here for a long time…
(Below: Andrew’s post)
As we walked to church today, both Kylie and I were a little unsure of what the day would hold for us.
We were planning on moving to another couchsurfers home later that day, which would put us farther from the airport, the city, and in general, the things we needed to get ourselves organized. Additionally with a plan to get out to the wine lands (for dinner at the tasting room, rated the best restaurant in Africa!) we would need a lot of coordination.
Needless to say Kylie and I were hopeful that revelation would come to us along the way and that the spirit would inspire us with what we should do.
Church as always, was an oasis in the desert. Sacrament was lovely, and I really felt the spirit in the hymns we sang.
Kylie and I had been stressed the past couple days with everything we had planned, scheduled, but more importantly- yet to plan or schedule. We were definitely sitting in the crossroads, unsure what the next path would hold.
As it came time for Sunday school Kylie and I were surprised to find ourselves in the YSA class. I could tell Kylie was disappointed and I perceived she hoped that someone nice in the older class would be able to help us in some way).
By this time I had resolved myself that we would be at the other couchsurfers home and we’d figure everything else later.
Sunday school was great, but priesthood held a miracle. In priesthood I made a friend named Ryno Kruger, who also turned out to be the son of the stake president who spoke. Ryno returned from his mission ~1 year ago and is heading to BYU this January.
The two of us got to chatting and when he asked where we were staying I told him honestly that we were moving our stuff to another place that afternoon.
Unexpectedly, he offered to have us to his home with his family. That was a miracle and I cannot tell you how grateful I was that he offered. Kylie and I hadn’t showered in a few days, were cold, and tired and something told me his offer would be a huge blessing. I had no idea how much of a blessing it would actually be.
After church Kylie and I gathered our things and joined the Kruger family for the ride home.
All of the family were very warm and friendly, all examples of truly Christlike people and I felt myself inspired by how they spoke, interacted, and behaved.
Along the route home, President Kruger made a quick stop to give Kylie the chance to take a photo of table mountain – I knew she was hall then.
We got home late in the afternoon and got ourselves organized/tidy for lunch and dinner. And to top it off, the missionaries were coming over that evening.
It was such a fun evening and a great experience. I found myself drifting off that evening grateful for the miracle Heavenly Father provided in the form of the Kruger family.