Wina has flown away
by Rod Elrod - posted Tuesday, July 17th, 2007 @ 12:33 pm
We talked with Edwina late Monday night.
After flying on Monday from Shreveport to Houston to Newark, she had just boarded a jet bound for Lisbon, Portugal, where she will serve as a Baptist missionary for more than a week.
She was excited, but tired, and planned to sleep during the flight across the ocean.
While we were talking, airline officials announced that all cell phones must be turned off.
"I'll call you when I get back in the states," Wina said.
She sounded so brave and grown-up, like a little cosmopolitan world traveler.
"I'll call you when I get back in the states," she had said.
Debi and I just wanted to cry.
I've never sent a son or daughter off to war, and hope I never do, but having Wina travel overseas, even for just a few days, has given me a new appreciation for those mothers and fathers whose children are serving in American military forces deployed in foreign lands.
Wina should be in no real danger--unlike the men and women who serve in the military--but she is still a teenager, and she is a long way from home, and I won't rest easy until she returns.
Conditions were hectic in the Elrod household during the last few days before her departure. Wina is a good student, a three-time student of the year in Franklin Parish, but she also has something of a flair for fashion.
For the longest time, she couldn't decide whether she wanted to go to college and study medicine or cosmetology.
At least we were able to solve one of her major problems before her departure.
She worried for days about the proper electrical converter to purchase to operate her hair dryer on the European circuits.
My suggestion, of course, was simple--leave the hair dryer at home.
I've never owned a hair dryer, but then I'm not pretty and blond with lots of hair, like Wina.
But one night this week, the head missionary called from Portugal, and Wina put the question straight to the man himself.
"Don't worry," he said. "We'll find a hair dryer for you."
And Wina didn't worry, not one bit.
She packed up and headed off, and she will call us when she gets back in the states.
It won't be too soon for me.