After months of planning, the time had come to travel to Eastern Europe. Our suitcases were filled with all the essentials: two week’s worth of freshly washed clothes, travel guides and maps, plus a journal to record our newest travel adventure. For added comfort, we would hand carry a new travel pillow that would support my aching head and neck which was still recovering from a car crash in July. I was still stunned that I had been cleared by my doctor to travel halfway across the world, and I was determined make the best out of this opportunity.
Our Goal: to look behind the “Old Iron Curtain” and get a glimpse of the history and culture of peoples in countries such as Hungary and Romania, the lands my husband’s grandparents left behind in order to begin a new life in America.
When we booked our trip, we had no idea that massive numbers of refugees and immigrants would also be making their way to and through Eastern Europe this year, with the hope of leaving behind their old lives in Syria and other parts of the Middle East in order to make new and better lives in Europe.
Today I begin a series of blogs that will reflect on the current situation in Eastern Europe through “two different but connected lenses”…my recent experience of our travels to that part of the world and also the plight of refugees and immigrants also passing through those countries at the same time.
Please join me on this journey of discovery. Also, I invite you to ask others to travel along with us as we explore how our stories connect with the stories of others around the world, and how we can learn from one another.