North Carolina

North Carolina has greeted us with us smiles, friendly drawls, and blue skies. Our flight into Charlotte went smoothly, and we enjoyed a scenic drive along Highway 321. We stopped just outside of Boone at Blowing Rock and took some photos of the beautiful mountains.

The above photo is a geological survey landmark from 1931 Andrew found on top of the cliff edge. It's a little scary to imagine a man surveying on top of this cliff!

We started our orientation today at Samaritan's Purse headquarters in Boone. We met several other people traveling to serve overseas as interns and full time employees, including two other married couples. We are the only people in orientation going to Cambodia this month. We were able to meet the Country Director for Cambodia and the Regional Director for Asia, as well as several other staff with whom we've been communicating via email over the past few months regarding our internship. It's been great to finally put faces to names!

This evening, we drove to Banner's Elk for dinner with my (Whitney's) Uncle Matt and Aunt Sharon (my father's sister) and their crew of four kids. I hadn't seen Matt and Sharon in about ten years; it was quite a treat to get together with them and have some delicious Pappy's BBQ. It is amusing how, no matter where you travel in the world, you are never too far from family or friends.

Our next few days will be filled with orientation meetings, so don't expect any horribly exciting updates from us. It will be good for us to learn about the scope of Samaritan's Purse work around the world and how we fit into the big picture of the organization's goals.

I'll leave you with a quote given during one of our meetings today that I found amusing and insightful:

"It has been proved that a sense of humor, low goal/task orientation, and the ability to fail are essential skills for easing the transition abroad." - The George Washington University Study Abroad Cross-Cultural Resources.