Day 20: Susani, Romania.
She became my constantly smiling photography assistant for four days. We dodged soccer balls at sports camp and ate sarmali and mici (cabbage rolls and sausages made of lamb and pork) at a Sunday dinner that filled a 40-foot table in a village community center. She was staying the summer in Cliciova with her grandparents – the fall would find her in Lugoj, a much larger city hours away where most children in rural areas journey by themselves to attend school.
I’ve been traveling now for years, and I wonder if there will be a day when my heart won’t ache at the thought of leaving the places that are added to the “feels like home” list in my soul. But with every trip, God shatters and mends my heart again to hold more beautiful and painful love. And so it was with Timea and the summer in Romania.
And so it is now, as I sit quietly and think about the past month. Kenya. Guatemala. Jamaica. I am aching. Aching. Aching.
And then, there hope is – popping up on Facebook Messenger like an epistle.
“Hello.” It’s my little assistant, sending a note for the very first time.
“Cum se numeste muzica ce am ascultato in microbuz cu fratele ovidiu?” (What is the name of the song we listened to in the van?)
“Am cântat “Spune Da.” Michelle Williams cântă.” (It is “Say Yes.” Michelle Williams sings it.) We must have sung it fifty times as we drove from village to village. Loudly. With the windows rolled down so all could hear.
Four days ago, I sang the same song in Jamaica. Miss Hyacinth joined us on stage to dance as the rest of the church joined in.
And now we both listen to the song – Timea in Lugoj and me in Austin. And all the places that feel like home feel a whole lot closer.
Join us in the singing today.