[et_pb_section fb_built=”1″ _builder_version=”3.22″][et_pb_row _builder_version=”3.25″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″ _builder_version=”3.25″ custom_padding=”|||” custom_padding__hover=”|||”][et_pb_text _builder_version=”3.27.4″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat”]I called my friend Umda as soon as I could, after arriving in N’Djamena, Chad. It’s my 15th trip, and it is always bittersweet to come here. Umda (a refugee leader) sounded so happy on the phone, thanking me for coming back to see him and everyone in his refugee camp. He asked about my family and told me to thank everyone. I get to see him tomorrow.
To get here, I made stops in a warm, tropical paradise and then in two frozen and extremely cold cities. I flew over oceans and lakes, over mountains and plains, and I saw the amazing northern lights. What an awe inspiring planet we live in! From that altitude, it all seems right. Even the extremes in our globe look beautiful and, yes, peaceful. It’s when we land that this other reality hits.
This region has seen and continues to see the human extremes. There are beautiful people, full of compassion and joy, but there is also suffering and people that have experienced unimaginable horrors. I feel so privileged to be able to fly across oceans and continents to be able to come and shake Umda’s hand and spend some time with his family. He once told me that he would never want to get on a plane, those metal machines, and fly so high. It sounds scary to him. He wants to keep his feet on the ground.
I’m looking forward to the next few days. Come along with me.
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