Friday, July 25, 2014

The Best Laid Plans

Packing for this summer was a doozey.  On the last week of school, I tried to plan out our next 12 weeks and pack accordingly.  I packed well for that last week of school, so that's something.  The rest of the summer I've spent searching through Ziplok bags and suitcases pushed under beds to find some random item that I didn't plan to need until the next stop.  That penultimate stop, the stop in which we will still live out of suitcases, is our temporary housing in Jakarta.  I believe I packed pretty well for those weeks, too.  Just enough of the appropriate clothes for just enough occasions.  Just enough of the toys and games that a girl can spend hours on.  The soft new sheets and the shiny new lunch boxes were mail ordered, so that even though I have spent the entire summer digging through 600 pounds of luggage for whatever small item I need right now, we will feel comfortable in our apartment for a few weeks.

But fabulous news - we just received word that our air shipment is in country, and will be delivered to us next week.  Hip hip hooray!  Most of our toys, all of our clothes, and the vast majority of our kitchen tools will arrive the day after I do.  So much for planning ahead!

I planned out the girls' school far in advance, as well.  My research on elementary schools in Jakarta began and ended with one question:  where do most of the embassy families send their children?  In a large community, I feel comfortable using the Ask the Audience lifeline as a key part of my school research.  Beyond that, their school will be a key part of their community, as will the embassy.  The more those communities overlap, the sooner they feel at home.

I learned that most of the embassy kids attend the same international school, and that the school has a stellar and prestigious reputation.  I also learned that admission is not guaranteed, and that I ought to plan ahead and apply as quickly as possible.  I am able to plan ahead.  I sent in my family applications in January, and then bit my nails for the next few months.

Both of our older girls were eventually admitted, and have now been confirmed spots at the same campus.  This was such a relief, and we patted ourselves on the back for a tour well planned.

Until we started hearing from other embassy families, who have begun pulling their kids out of this same school.  The school is embroiled in a very ugly sex abuse scandal, and is apparently seeing protestors outside its gates.

I'll be honest.  This last bit of news is too heavy for me to digest.  We will move ahead with the blessings we have at this point - both of our girls secured places at a school and campus known for strong teachers and close community.  We will continue to pray for the best for each of them.  And we will be watching this entire scenario with much more scrutiny than I would prefer.

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