It is with an ABUNDANCE of gratitude, hope, and anticipation that I write this post today!
2020 has made it nearly impossible to hope for/expect anything. If you have been following my journey, you may be aware that I am currently on my fourth attempt at going to Nepal this year. Initially, the country kept changing their dates to open borders. Of course, then I also got COVID-19, which delayed plans yet again. Finally, it was announced that beginning November 17th (tomorrow), they will begin allowing tourists....but you have to go through a bunch of hoops (like booking a hiking trek, obtaining insurance for COVID, booking a hotel for quarantine, and obtaining a negative PCR test for COVID-19).
To make a long story/journey short, I got all of the documents and bookings required and mailed it off once again to the Embassy of Nepal. In previous attempts, they sent back everything with a note stating that they were unable to process any visa applications at the time. Such a roller coaster!
Anyways, the Embassy had my passport for almost two weeks....and I got it back today! What's even MORE exciting.....IT CAME WITH A VISA!!! This means that as long as I can actually get to Nepal, I am permitted to stay!
I have flights scheduled for this weekend- departing from the USA on Saturday and arriving in Nepal around midnight on Sunday. All that stands in the way now is passing my COVID test with a negative result and my flight actually taking off and not getting canceled/rescheduled. So it's still not definitive, BUT it's as close as you can be at this point! I won't know about my COVID test until likely 24 hours before my flight. And my flights could get changed at the very last minute. But for now, I'm thankful to have my passport and visa in hand and am hopeful that in just a few days, I will be on a plane headed towards Nepal!
After I reach Nepal, I will be quarantined in a hotel next to the airport for 7 days. They will test me again for COVID-19 on the 5th day and if I'm still negative, then I can leave on day #7. If I am positive, however, I will have to stay in quarantine until my results are clear. After that, I will FINALLY be able to see and hug my Nepali friends and start loving on some kids in Hetauda! My heart is full.
Thank you so much to everyone who has checked in and especially to those who have been praying! Please keep them coming...particularly this week and specifically for negative PCR tests for COVID and for my flights to go as scheduled. (Because I have already had the virus, I was told that I would test positive for 5-6 weeks, which have passed, and could continue to produce false-positive tests for a few months, but that it is a 50/50 chance....no one knows, but God does! Thankful HE is in control and hoping this is His way!)