Hi! My Name Is… {The Grove: Introductions}

Hi! My Name Is

Hey Friends,

And now, introducing… you! Yes, you, you who rarely comment or you who often comment. You who are reading this. In a week when we are pulling back the curtain and letting you get a peek inside the day-to-day life of Velvet Ashes, we want to know you too!

Below you will find 10 questions that will help us get to know each other. You can copy and paste them into the comments, and I’ll give my answers here too- it’s only fair. Feel free to share as little or as much as you want. You could even pick just one question to answer. We just would love to hear from you!

1. Where do you live? (We know some are in sensitive areas, so it’s totally okay to say something more general like “a small town” or “the desert” or “The Middle East.” You know your parameters, have fun with it!)

2. If we stopped by to visit you, what is a dish or local drink that we absolutely must try?

3. What is the longest planned layover you’ve had (not caused by delays or missed flights)?

4. What is something you dislike that everyone else loves (from your passport or host culture)?

5. Do you know your Myers/Briggs type or Enneagram number? Any other personality typing inventory results?

6. What do you enjoy about daily life in the culture you live in?

7. Do you have a song that has been on repeat in this season?

8. What book are you currently reading or what’s on your to-read list?

9. Today, what’s the weather like where you are?

10. How do you usually end your days?

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Okay, here are my answers. I can’t wait to read yours!

1. Where do you live? (We know some are in sensitive areas, so it’s totally okay to say something more general like “a small town” or “the desert” or “The Middle East.” You know your parameters, have fun with it!) After 5 years living in Cambodia, I’m now making my home in the very center of the US, in Nebraska.

2. If we stopped by to visit you, what is a dish or local drink that we absolutely must try? I so wish I could chat with you over a Khmer iced coffee! But here in my hometown, I would take you to my friend’s bakery for a peach & almond scone.

3. What is the longest planned layover you’ve had (not caused by delays or missed flights)? A few years ago flying from Cambodia to the US, I picked a flight with a 12 hour layover in Seoul, South Korea. I’m usually super picky about my layovers, but I decided it would be fun to do an airport tour in Seoul. It didn’t disappoint! It was hard to stay awake after traveling overnight from Phnom Penh, but I enjoyed seeing a new city and trying some yummy local food.

4. What is something you dislike that everyone else loves (from your passport or host culture)? Hmm, not sure if everyone loves them, but I hate the maraschino cherries that come on ice cream sundaes. I usually ask for them to be left off or give them away. Also don’t hate me, but I’ve never quite gotten in to the humor of The Office (I tried, I really did).

5. Do you know your Myers/Briggs type or Enneagram number? Any other personality typing inventory results? I’m an Enneagram 6, ISFJ. I’ve had so much fun learning more about the Enneagram recently!

6. What do you enjoy about daily life in the culture you live in? I miss the after-lunch rest time in Cambodia and trips to the local market. Here I love walking at the lake and greeting those who are also out for an early morning exercise time.

7. Do you have a song that has been on repeat in this season? Lately I’ve been listening to Elevation Worship’s Acoustic Sessions while I get ready on Sunday mornings. It’s been lovely.

8. What book are you currently reading or what’s on your to-read list? My to-read list is soooo long! Right now I’m reading “Didn’t See It Coming” by Corey Niewholf, “The Great Alone” by Kristin Hannah, and I’m listening to our Book Club book “Born a Crime” by Trevor Noah.

9. Today, what’s the weather like where you are? We’re just getting ready for fall here in Nebraska. We still have some 80 F (26 C) temps but lots of 70s too which I love. After living in the tropics I so appreciate getting to wear sweaters and jeans.

10. How do you usually end your days? After supper and watching a show, I like getting in bed early and reading.

And now over to you! Copy the questions above and paste the ones you want to answer in the comments below. Let’s have fun introducing ourselves to each other!

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54 Comments

  1. April September 12, 2019

    1. Where do you live? Haiti

    2. If we stopped by to visit you, what is a dish or local drink that we absolutely must try? Sitwon juice, fritay, a mix of fried foods like fried plantains, fried pork (fruit), pikiliz, and diri (rice).

    3. What is the longest planned layover you’ve had (not caused by delays or missed flights)? 7 hours but that was for vacation not missions 😉

    4. What is something you dislike that everyone else loves (from your passport or host culture)? The pop and juice here that comes in glass pop bottles. I don’t like the taste of them.

    5. Do you know your Myers/Briggs type or Enneagram number? Any other personality typing inventory results? Nope I don’t. I’m a people person. Encourager. Love to be around people but also need my space afterwards 😉 Spontaneous and loves trying new things.

    6. What do you enjoy about daily life in the culture you live in? Being with my family more. Having help with cleaning and food!

    7. Do you have a song that has been on repeat in this season? A lot!!! One is Fighting for me by Riley Clemmons

    8. What book are you currently reading or what’s on your to-read list? Trusting your unknown future to a known God bible study by Laura dingman and then Daring to Hope by Katie Davis.

    9. Today, what’s the weather like where you are? HOT 😉 A very hot and humid day.

    10. How do you usually end your days? A cold shower!!!! My fav!

    1. April September 12, 2019

      *pork not fruit

    2. Carol Iverson September 13, 2019

      1. Where do you live? (We know some are in sensitive areas, so it’s totally okay to say something more general like “a small town” or “the desert” or “The Middle East.” You know your parameters, have fun with it!) Japan

      2. If we stopped by to visit you, what is a dish or local drink that we absolutely must try? “Real” Japanese sushi. People from America are always surprised by the offerings at our local Kaitenzushi (conveyor-belt sushi). Freshly made to order! Tender! Delicious!

      3. What is the longest planned layover you’ve had (not caused by delays or missed flights)?We’ve been delayed in Istanbul a few times when on our way to visit our children in southeast Asia, and once when there had been recent bombings, so we were hesitant to go take a tour. I think the longest was 12 hours.

      4. What is something you dislike that everyone else loves (from your passport or host culture)? I would have to say the obsession with messaging and social media that dominates both cultures. It’s very difficult for me to see people constantly on their phones in the trains, on busses, and then, when I’m in the States, to be in conversations that are frequently interrupted with messaging “dings” and similar distractions from devices. I worry about the effect on authentic personal relationship building skills in both cultures.

      5. Do you know your Myers/Briggs type or Enneagram number? Any other personality typing inventory results? I’m an INFP and a 2.

      6. What do you enjoy about daily life in the culture you live in? I enjoy the order and organization of the Japanese culture. I grew up in a home that made that a priority, so I came to value those qualities. People dutifully line up and wait, are careful not to be a bother to others, and work together to make processes go smoothly and with near-perfect results. I’ve also come to see how those values can become idols and encourage a self-righteousness that feeds pride; and when one is unable to meet the expectations, can contribute to the shame culture that leads one to withdrawal from the pressure of society and for some, suicide, to end that pressure.

      7. Do you have a song that has been on repeat in this season? The Getty’s music has been playing in the background of our packing to head back to the States for a 6-month HMA.

      8. What book are you currently reading or what’s on your to-read list? God’s Good Design, by Claire Smith and The Valley of Vision for my daily devotions. To-read list is really long – I’ve been teaching for 9 years in a small Christian school in Japan, and have had to do so much (wonderful!) reading for class prep, so there hasn’t been much time for “fun” reading. Now, I have 6 months to tackle the list!

      9. Today, what’s the weather like where you are? Hot and humid!!! Just had the worst typhoon to hit our area in many years. It tore the steeple off our school and saturated the third floor where all our books are stored. Thankfully, the damage was not as extensive as originally thought, and the repairs are underway.

      10. How do you usually end your days? I usually get home from school about 7, make dinner (sometimes enough for the interns who live with my husband and me), grade papers, prepare for teaching the next day, and have a bit of prayer with my husband, usually as we’re falling asleep! (This means we rarely get through the list of praying for our large family of 9 children and 28 grand children:)!

      1. Sarah Hilkemann September 13, 2019

        Carol, thanks for sharing! I’m now tempted to come visit and try some sushi! 🙂 Also I love The Valley of Vision!

    3. Sarah Hilkemann September 13, 2019

      April, all your food suggestions sound so amazing! What is sitwon juice?

      Cold showers after a hot day definitely are refreshing- although I think I still prefer hot most of the time! 🙂

  2. Corella September 12, 2019

    1. Where do you live? Thailand

    2. If we stopped by to visit you, what is a dish or local drink that we absolutely must try? Cha nom (Thai milk tea is delicious) and khao soi (think spicy coconut soup with melt in your mouth chicken and crispy noodles on top)

    3. What is the longest planned layover you’ve had (not caused by delays or missed flights)? 18 hours in Hong Kong … twice! The first time our kids literally couldn’t keep their eyes open once we hit baggage claim, so we just slept there in the middle of the night. The second time we got smart and booked an airport hotel. Much better!

    4. What is something you dislike that everyone else loves (from your passport or host culture)? I’m kind of with you on The Office … I just can’t get into sit-com humor like most of my American friends can.

    5. Do you know your Myers/Briggs type or Enneagram number? Any other personality typing inventory results? Can’t remember Myers/Briggs, but I’m an Enneagram 3.

    6. What do you enjoy about daily life in the culture you live in? All the smiles. Thais are generally friendly and our missionary community is great.

    7. Do you have a song that has been on repeat in this season? “Hallelujah Here Below” is amazing.

    8. What book are you currently reading or what’s on your to-read list? Ha! So many! I’m currently loving the Sensible Shoes series by Sharon Garlough Brown and The Good and Beautiful God by James Bryan Smith.

    9. Today, what’s the weather like where you are? Sunny, humid, and hot.

    10. How do you usually end your days? Tucking my kiddos in bed, packing their lunches, finishing projects I started early in the day, and crawling in bed to read for a few minutes.

    1. Sarah Hilkemann September 13, 2019

      Corella, I LOVE khou soi! I spent a lot of time in Bangkok over the years for medical reasons and it is my second Asian home. 🙂

  3. Amber Thiessen September 12, 2019

    1. Where do you live? I spent 6 years living in Tanzania, and now settled back into life on the Canadian prairies.
    2. If we stopped by to visit you, what is a dish or local drink that we absolutely must try? There would be a warm, saskatoon berry pie for you to enjoy! Coconut beans and rice just wouldn’t taste the same without the high humidity and palm trees.
    3. What is the longest planned layover you’ve had (not caused by delays or missed flights)? We had a 12 hour layover in London, waiting for the red eye into Nairobi. It was our first trip to Africa, and we thought we’d quickly tour some of the city.
    4. What is something you dislike that everyone else loves (from your passport or host culture)? The dishwasher. Everyone else I know must have some kind of super duper dishwasher that always gets everything clean…mine just can’t get off caked on food, so I end up having to hand wash anyway – so I often wash by hand.
    5. Do you know your Myers/Briggs type or Enneagram number? Any other personality typing inventory results? I am an INTJ. I think I’m a 1 on the Enneagram (still learning that one). On the Birkman Assessment, my usual is red(Expediter), with interests almost right in the middle but lands on green(Communicator) and both my needs & stress are in the blue (Planner).
    6. What do you enjoy about daily life in the culture you live in? Daily life in the African bush is unplanned, free and flexible. Back here, it’s definitely more activity-driven and time-sensitive. I actually find that I enjoy both (or I just learn to adapt to where I am).
    7. Do you have a song that has been on repeat in this season? “Hallelujah” by Bethel Music. It resonates really deeply with me. We almost lost our daughter to sickness a few years ago. The strength and power of prayer that we felt over us, continually leads me to the feet of Jesus, as I lift others up to Him.
    8. What book are you currently reading or what’s on your to-read list? lol there’d be no room for my to-read list 🙂 but currently reading “Practicing Affirmation” by Sam Crabtree, “Storm Rising” by Ronie Kendig and “A Brain Wise Therapist” by Bonnie Badenoch (for a counselling course). A few on my up-next list are “A Company of Heroes” by Tim Keesee and “Even Better Than Eden” by Nancy Guthrie.
    9. Today, what’s the weather like where you are? It’s cloudy, rainy and 9 degree celsius.
    10. Today, what’s the weather like where you are? After tucking in the kiddos, there’s time for me to hide in a book!

    1. Sarah Hilkemann September 13, 2019

      Amber, I’m with you on the dishwasher! 🙂 Although I will say, I have hardly ever had access to one. Washing dishes by hand is good thinking time for me!

  4. Dana September 12, 2019

    1. Where do you live? The west coast of Mexico for the past 7 years, previously in the US.

    2. If we stopped by to visit you, what is a dish or local drink that we absolutely must try? Tacos, of course! Al Pastor, carne asada, arrachera, lengua… Or maybe some fresh-from-the-ocean seafood.

    4. What is something you dislike that everyone else loves (from your passport or host culture)? I don’t really like cinnamon rolls or ice cream very much.

    5. Do you know your Myers/Briggs type or Enneagram number? INFJ, 6w5

    6. What do you enjoy about daily life in the culture you live in? I like how much more relaxed driving/traffic is… don’t get me wrong, it’s definitely “crazy” to those who aren’t used to it. But it feels more intuitive and I’m not always worried about getting a ticket or road rage. I also appreciate the cultural norm of greeting every person in a room you enter, and giving a quick air kiss/cheek brush (and have to consciously stop myself from greeting people that way in the US).

    8. What book are you currently reading or what’s on your to-read list?

    9. Today, what’s the weather like where you are? Hot, muggy, sunny during the day and rainy at night.

    10. How do you usually end your days? A little chill-out time on the computer, chatting with my husband, doing a little facial skincare routine.

    1. Sarah Hilkemann September 13, 2019

      Dana, I’m coming to visit just for the food! (Okay, I shouldn’t be reading these comments when I’m hungry!) I think you are the first person I’ve met that doesn’t like cinnamon rolls. 🙂

  5. Michele September 12, 2019

    1.Where do you live? Kathmandu, Nepal

    2. If we stopped by to visit you, what is a dish or local drink that we absolutely must try? Momos and chiya (chai)

    4. What is something you dislike that everyone else loves (from your passport or host culture)? Meat. I don’t hate it, but definitely don’t enjoy it as much as most Nepalese or Americans.

    5. Do you know your Myers/Briggs type or Enneagram number? INTJ or INFJ 5w4

    6. What do you enjoy about daily life in the culture you live in? It’s laid back and people oriented.

    8. What book are you currently reading or what’s on your to-read list? The Land Remembers by Ben Logan – about farm life in the 1930s in the area my dad’s family is from.

    9.Today, what’s the weather like where you are? I’m in Wisconsin at the moment and there was just a HUGE clap of thunder. Flash flood warnings.

    10. How do you usually end your days? Reading!

    1. Sarah Hilkemann September 13, 2019

      Michele, The Land Remembers sounds really interesting! The book club at my local library that I’m part of is reading Heartland by Sarah Smarsh, which is about a gal who grew up on a Kansas wheat farm in the 1980s and 90s . Since I was a Nebraska farm kid about that same time I’m really curious to see all it covers (I just started it this week).

  6. Rachel Kahindi September 12, 2019

    1. Where do you live? A lazy little beach town called Kilifi, Kenya

    2. If we stopped by to visit you, what is a dish or local drink that we absolutely must try? There is so much good food, but we would probably start with some chicken stew and chapati.

    3. What is the longest planned layover you’ve had (not caused by delays or missed flights)? 12 hours overnight in Nairobi. We booked a hotel by the airport and got some sleep!

    4. What is something you dislike that everyone else loves (from your passport or host culture)? In Kenya, that would be liver/organ meat. It’s always given to dinner guests, but my husband intercedes for me so that I don’t have to eat it and I’m not insulting the hosts.

    5. Do you know your Myers/Briggs type or Enneagram number? Any other personality typing inventory results? INFP and Enneagram 9

    6. What do you enjoy about daily life in the culture you live in? I like that I’m not in a hurry when I’m here. I have a lot to do, but in this context, I feel ok with leaving some things undone.

    7. Do you have a song that has been on repeat in this season? My internal soundtrack changes frequently. Lion and the Lamb is in my head today.

    8. What book are you currently reading or what’s on your to-read list? I’m reading The Night Window by Dean Koontz and Born a Crime by Trevor Noah.

    9. Today, what’s the weather like where you are? It has been raining this morning. Our high today is 29 C.

    10. How do you usually end your days? Lately my husband and I have been watching Netflix after the kids are in bed. We’re looking for a new series to watch.

    1. Bayta Schwarz September 13, 2019

      Rachel! Looking at those personality types, we seem to be the same person! 😉 🙂

    2. Sarah Hilkemann September 13, 2019

      Rachel, I’m so glad your husband helps you in the organ meat eating department. Yikes, I know I wouldn’t be able to do that! I never thought of myself as a picky eater until I went to Cambodia, and then I had a hard time with certain things like intestine and bugs and congealed blood.
      What kinds of shows do you and your husband like to watch?

    3. Rachel Kahindi September 13, 2019

      My thoughts exactly, Bayta!

      Sarah – we like action/suspense/excitement. I really liked Stranger Things. He loved The Punisher. We just finished The Walking Dead (all 9 seasons).

  7. Katherine September 13, 2019

    1. I live in Cambodia, between a tourist town and the jungle. Best of both worlds, I can get a take away pizza and eat it while watching the sunset behind palm trees.
    4. I dislike travelling, at least I can’t imagine doing it just for fun. So far I pretty much only do it when I have to.
    9. Nice cool weather today which is refreshing as most of the year the heat and humidity are brutal (33C/91F)

    1. Sarah Hilkemann September 13, 2019

      Katherine, ah, you are making me miss Cambodia! Except not the heat and humidity. That I don’t miss so much. 😉

  8. Bayta Schwarz September 13, 2019

    Did anyone else see the title and wanted to go “Inigo Montoya, etc etc” or am I the only Princess Bride fan here?! Also, looking at flights to Nebraska now, Sarah – those peach & almond scones sound amazing! And I am with you on those weird cherry things! Ok, here goes.
    1. Where do you live? Berlin/Germany. Have been back in my passport country for a few years now after 16 years overseas (mostly the UK).

    2. If we stopped by to visit you, what is a dish or local drink that we absolutely must try? You’d probably need to have a döner (kebab) as it seems to be the national dish 😊 Even better, though, I’d take you to lots of my favourite cafes. So many fun ones around!

    3. What is the longest planned layover you’ve had (not caused by delays or missed flights)? Don’t recall any that were out of the ordinary.

    4. What is something you dislike that everyone else loves (from your passport or host culture)? There is this German sparkling wine (called Sekt) which is an essential part of any and every celebration here and which I really really don’t like… Thankfully often you can get away with diluting it with lots of orange juice!

    5. Do you know your Myers/Briggs type or Enneagram number? Any other personality typing inventory results? INFP. Only just starting to learn about Ennegram but I think I am a 9.

    6. What do you enjoy about daily life in the culture you live in? I love that wherever I go, I hear so many different languages, as people from all around the world make Berlin their home. Downside: it’s a pretty transient place (probably like most major cities). I spend a lot of time on public transport which means I get a lot more reading time then when I had a car. Love it!

    7. Do you have a song that has been on repeat in this season? Not really much of a music person so no.

    8. What book are you currently reading or what’s on your to-read list? Aside from the VA book club book, I am also reading Oliver Twist. I love those free classics on Kindle!

    9. Today, what’s the weather like where you are? Bit grey and 20C/68F. Thankfully the weekend should be a bit brighter but the temperatures for next week seem rather autumnal ☹

    10. How do you usually end your days? Somehow my body clock seems to have changed the past couple of years or so. I now often get a second wind around 10pm, and feel very creative. Which is great unless for some reason I have to get up early the next morning…

    1. Rachel Kahindi September 13, 2019

      LOL! Inigo Montoya. 😀

    2. Sarah Hilkemann September 13, 2019

      Bayta, you need to come visit me for a scone and then we can trade and I’ll come visit you for the cafes! 🙂 I’ve always been slightly envious of people who get a second wind at night. I just can’t keep my eyes open that long. My creative spurts tend to come while I’m taking a shower or doing the dishes. 🙂

  9. Valerie September 13, 2019

    1. Where do you live? Senegal

    2. If we stopped by to visit you, what is a dish or local drink that we absolutely must try? attaya – hot, strong mint tea served after the midday meal of rice, fish and veggies

    3. What is the longest planned layover you’ve had (not caused by delays or missed flights)? 10 hrs when I was in college, going through Seoul on my way to Mongolia. We went out and had spicy noodles for breakfast and the best bread I’ve ever had

    4. What is something you dislike that everyone else loves (from your passport or host culture)? in my host culture, palm oil and hot weather. In my home culture, most popular sitcoms and apple products.

    5. Do you know your Myers/Briggs type or Enneagram number? Any other personality typing inventory results? I’m right in the middle on Myers/Briggs on every category except definitely an introvert. Enneagram 2w3

    6. What do you enjoy about daily life in the culture you live in? the slow pace, taking time for people and it’s sad to see modernity and western culture creeping in and taking that away bit by bit

    7. Do you have a song that has been on repeat in this season? Always Good by Andrew Peterson and Sovereign Over Us by Aaron Keyes

    8. What book are you currently reading or what’s on your to-read list? Root of the Righteous by Tozer, Just finished God’s Smuggler by brother Andrew, and The Black Stallion Returns for a family read-aloud. 🙂

    9. Today, what’s the weather like where you are? So very hot (104 real feel) and humid (actually lower today than it has been at only 70%)!

    10. How do you usually end your days? Reading in bed

    1. Britney September 13, 2019

      Love Sovereign Over Us!

    2. Sarah Hilkemann September 13, 2019

      Valerie, Ah, I don’t envy your humidity and temperature! I definitely feel like I need to check out the songs you listed. 🙂 Thanks for sharing!

  10. Mel September 13, 2019

    1. Where do you live? (We know some are in sensitive areas, so it’s totally okay to say something more general like “a small town” or “the desert” or “The Middle East.” You know your parameters, have fun with it!)
    – Currently in North Africa
    2. If we stopped by to visit you, what is a dish or local drink that we absolutely must try?
    – I think you’d need to try makroudh and the local tea 😍
    3. What is the longest planned layover you’ve had (not caused by delays or missed flights)?
    – London for eight hours back in my single days. Planned long layovers with three (almost four) kids five and under is not a thing right now
    4. What is something you dislike that everyone else loves (from your passport or host culture)?
    – from my passport culture…the consumerism (I know not EVERYONE loves this)
    5. Do you know your Myers/Briggs type or Enneagram number? Any other personality typing inventory results?
    – M/B I’m an ENFJ. Haven’t done an enneagram and may never 🤷‍♀️
    6. What do you enjoy about daily life in the culture you live in?
    – I enjoy that people find relationship a priority over time
    7. Do you have a song that has been on repeat in this season?
    – Resurrection Power
    8. What book are you currently reading or what’s on your to-read list?
    – currently Five Things to Pray for your Children. Hoping to get into some Iohn Newton soon. Also excited for Soem Jen Wilkin
    9. Today, what’s the weather like where you are?
    – Upper 80s and getting warmer ☀️ missing fall back home right now
    10. How do you usually end your days?
    – cuddling my babies and doing a little reading

    1. Sarah Hilkemann September 13, 2019

      Mel, so fun to “meet” you! 🙂 Sounds like you’ve got your hands full in the very best way with kiddos! What is makroudh? 🙂

  11. Elizabeth September 13, 2019

    1. Where do you live? on the edge of a small village in Angola (sub-Saharan Africa)

    2. If we stopped by to visit you, what is a dish or local drink that we absolutely must try? I would have to serve you some “shima” (mush made from ground cassava root) with “relish” on the side (could be beans or leaves or chicken, usually prepared with lots of oil, salt, and tomato). All eaten with the hands!

    3. What is the longest planned layover you’ve had (not caused by delays or missed flights)? 16 hours in Heathrow. After a few of these stop-overs on our way from sub-Saharan Africa to Canada with four young children, we discovered that we could get a day-room at a nearby hotel. It was well worth the extra expense!

    4. What is something you dislike that everyone else loves (from your passport or host culture)? Tim Horton’s. (I’m from Canada!)

    5. Do you know your Myers/Briggs type or Enneagram number? Any other personality typing inventory results? I’m an ISFJ

    6. What do you enjoy about daily life in the culture you live in? The warmth of the people who live around us.

    7. Do you have a song that has been on repeat in this season? Jesus is MIne (Jordan Kaufler and Matt Merker) and the Getty album Sing! Psalms Ancient and Modern

    8. What book are you currently reading or what’s on your to-read list? Currently reading The Jesus Way by Eugene Peterson. Sitting on my night-table waiting to be read is Disappointment with God by Philip Yancey.

    9. Today, what’s the weather like where you are? 37 degrees C. Dry and smoky air.

    10. How do you usually end your days? Reading my Kindle in bed.

    1. Sarah Hilkemann September 13, 2019

      Hey Elizabeth, thanks for sharing! Transit/airport hotels are the most wonderful invention. 😀

    2. Adora September 13, 2019

      Oh Timmies! That’s a good one. I don’t like it either – the coffee is terrible, the cup lids don’t work, and doughnuts are too sweet for me these days!

  12. Britney September 13, 2019

    1. Where do you live? Kenya

    2. If we stopped by to visit you, what is a dish or local drink that we absolutely must try? You can’t visit anyone in Kenya without having a cup of chai. So I’d boil some milk water and add the tea and those yummy spices.

    3. What is the longest planned layover you’ve had (not caused by delays or missed flights)? 8 hours in a London

    4. What is something you dislike that everyone else loves (from your passport or host culture)? Coffee. Sometimes I feel like I’m the only “overseas worker” that doesn’t drink it. Or maybe even the only person that I know! 😜

    5. Do you know your Myers/Briggs type or Enneagram number? I did those tests for various orgs but I don’t follow them really. I think with MB I am INFJ.

    6. What do you enjoy about daily life in the culture you live in? Relationships! The culture here is very relationship focused and (though it drives me crazy for some things) they are less concerned with time.

    7. Do you have a song that has been on repeat in this season? Yet Not I But Through Christ In Me by City Alight

    8. What book are you currently reading or what’s on your to-read list? So many on my list! I just finished a good fiction book called The Lost Castle that was really good. I’m about to start a book about Enduring Suffering by Elisabeth Elliot (my favorite)

    9. Today, what’s the weather like where you are? It was a hot one today! In Kenya it’s coming to the end of the long rains and it’s been quite cool. But today it got up to 80 degrees Fahrenheit.

    10. How do you usually end your days? Snuggling with my husband watching whatever show we’re bi he watching on Hulu. ❤️

    1. Sarah Hilkemann September 13, 2019

      Hi Britney! You are not the only person I know who doesn’t like coffee. 🙂 My sister-in-law is a teacher and doesn’t drink coffee and feels like she’s the only one who doesn’t!

  13. Erin September 13, 2019

    1. Where do you live? (We know some are in sensitive areas, so it’s totally okay to say something more general like “a small town” or “the desert” or “The Middle East.” You know your parameters, have fun with it!)
    I live on the eastern border of Metro Manila, population 12 (almost 13!) million people in the Philippines! A few hours from the beach and/or mountains.

    2. If we stopped by to visit you, what is a dish or local drink that we absolutely must try?
    My favorite local food is inihaw, which is just grilled food. I always order garlic chicken, eggplant and sometimes (when I want to splurge) squid with a pico de gallo-type vegetable mix. The crispy charred skin of the chicken and aroma that the charcoal and smoke infuse into the food is intoxicating. For dessert, leche flan!

    3. What is the longest planned layover you’ve had (not caused by delays or missed flights)?
    When I lived in a different country in SE Asia, I had a 13 hour overnight layover in Singapore. It’s an amazing airport with fast wifi, so it wasn’t too bad, but 13 hours in Changi during the day would have been more ideal 🙂

    4. What is something you dislike that everyone else loves (from your passport or host culture)?
    Carbonated water? I understand the appeal, but I just don’t like it and think it’s weird.

    5. Do you know your Myers/Briggs type or Enneagram number? Any other personality typing inventory results?
    I always think these are fun to learn about people! I am an INFP and a 2 on the Enneagram 🙂

    6. What do you enjoy about daily life in the culture you live in?
    So many smiles and affordable exotic fruit!

    7. Do you have a song that has been on repeat in this season?
    Am I allowed more than one? ‘Farther Along’ by Josh Garrels, ‘Not in a Hurry’ by Will Reagan/United Pursuit and ‘The Secret Place’ by Phil Wickham/Madison Cunnigham

    8. What book are you currently reading or what’s on your to-read list?
    A beautiful book (yet to be released) called “Always Love” by Sara Lubbers, “Winter Fortress” by Neal Bascomb and trying to keep up with “New Morning Mercies” by Paul David Tripp

    9. Today, what’s the weather like where you are?
    Pleasant at 85F, low humidity and medium cloud cover! It is rainy season, which helps to keep air pollution a bit lower than normal, as well!

    10. How do you usually end your days?
    Wash my face, brush my teeth, settle in bed – watch a show or scroll Pinterest for recipe ideas while texting with my family who is waking up in the US!

    1. Sarah Hilkemann September 13, 2019

      Erin, I miss Southeast Asian fruit! What is your favorite? I really liked Thai mangoes and mangosteen. Also the grilled chicken dish you described sounds amazing!!

  14. Tina September 13, 2019

    1. Where do you live? Ecuador

    2. If we stopped by to visit you, what is a dish or local drink that we absolutely must try? Volqueteros – basically a cold nacho-like dish made from plantain chips, white beans, tomato salsa and topped off with a can of tuna. Sounds weird but it’s delicious

    3. What is the longest planned layover you’ve had (not caused by delays or missed flights)? We planned an 20 hour layover in FL and stayed at a coastal hotel with a great pool. The girls slept after an overnight flight and my husband and I napped and sipped tropical drinks. Best decision ever.

    5. Do you know your Myers/Briggs type or Enneagram number? Any other personality typing inventory results? I think I’m a 7. Currently reading and trying to determine.

    6. What do you enjoy about daily life in the culture you live in? I’ve learned to love and embrace the slower pace of life.

    9. Today, what’s the weather like where you are? Humid and 18 feet of rain a year. Total change from 4 seasons and dry 🙂

    10. How do you usually end your days? Watching a show in bed with my husband. It’s our time to chill together…

    1. Sarah Hilkemann September 13, 2019

      Hey Tina! Ecuador has a special place in my heart. I did a summer study abroad there in college and it was the first place I visited overseas. I don’t remember having the dish you described but it sound yummy!!

  15. Jenny September 13, 2019

    Where do you live? A beautiful town at the end of a fjord in the north of Iceland called Akureyri

    2. If we stopped by to visit you, what is a dish or local drink that we absolutely must try? Hmm, I think I would take you to the bakery to have Kleinur, a twisted doughnut style pastry that I love

    3. What is the longest planned layover you’ve had (not caused by delays or missed flights)? This past June on my way back from a youth camp I was working I chose a flight with a 12 hour layover in DFW. I took my 7 year old daughter with me and we were able to get a hotel room for the day so we slept, ate, watched planes land and take off and had sweet conversations before heading back to Iceland.

    4. What is something you dislike that everyone else loves (from your passport or host culture)? Hmm, prob sláter, which is an Icelandic food made from sheep innards. My husband loves it but no thank you for me!

    5. Do you know your Myers/Briggs type or Enneagram number? Any other personality typing inventory results? A few years ago I was an ENFJ, a few months ago I ended up changing to an INFJ. Pretty accurate to my shift in season

    6. What do you enjoy about daily life in the culture you live in? Coffee Time, dedicates time in the morning and afternoons to sitting down and having coffee and treats/snacks

    7. Do you have a song that has been on repeat in this season? “The Real Thing” by Maverick City Music. It’s such a special song. It’s on repeat almost every night and during my quiet time with the Lord.

    8. What book are you currently reading or what’s on your to-read list? Many books 🙂 But currently Triggers by Wendy Speake and Amber Lia, The Prince by Francine Rivers, and Reckless Devotion by Roland and Heidi Baker.

    9. Today, what’s the weather like where you are? Cold, rainy and slightly windy. We may start getting snow next week!

    10. How do you usually end your days? My husband coaches a lot in the evenings so after putting the kids to bed I grab ice cream if there is some in my freezer, climb in bed myself and write, edit or read.

    1. Sarah Hilkemann September 13, 2019

      Hi Jenny! I loved reading your introduction and trying to picture where you live! It sounds beautiful- you had me at fjord and pastry. 🙂

      1. Jenny September 14, 2019

        Hello!

  16. Adora September 13, 2019

    I’m going to pick and choose 🙂

    1. Where do you live?
    Northern Ontario (it’s fun to say and is officially that, but it’s not really that far north at all!)

    2. If we stopped by to visit you, what is a dish or local drink that we absolutely must try?
    I’m still trying to figure that out because I just moved here! I’ve had a few recommendations on desserts fall through 🙁

    3. What is the longest planned layover you’ve had (not caused by delays or missed flights)?
    18 hours between a bus to the airport and first flight!

    5. Do you know your Myers/Briggs type or Enneagram number? Any other personality typing inventory results?
    5w4 – My 4 wing is pretty strong sometimes, but I also find I have the hardest time getting along with 4s. I love using the Enneagram to relate better to other people!

    6. What do you enjoy about daily life in the culture you live in?
    It’s outdoors-y, lots of parks and forests around!

    9. Today, what’s the weather like where you are?
    It’s gloomy and cold, like it’s been all week. I’m disappointed because I was told this is one of the sunniest cities in Eastern Canada!

    10. How do you usually end your days?
    I have a cat, so the last thing I do before going to bed is making sure she is fed, well-watered, and knows it’s time to sleep (and be quiet!) 😀

    1. Sarah Hilkemann September 16, 2019

      Adora, that’s a bummer about the dessert recommendations not working out! Hope you get some sunny days in soon. 🙂

  17. Bekah September 13, 2019

    Ooo I love these weeks 🙂

    1. Where do you live?
    A large city in East Asia that most of you have never heard of! (Funny how cities in this part of the world are so often like that…)

    2. If we stopped by to visit you, what is a dish or local drink that we absolutely must try?
    Hot pot!

    3. What is the longest planned layover you’ve had (not caused by delays or missed flights)?
    16 hours (but that was 15+ years ago)

    4. What is something you dislike that everyone else loves (from your passport or host culture)?
    Hanson. And chicken feet.

    5. Do you know your Myers/Briggs type or Enneagram number? Any other personality typing inventory results?
    ENFP for sure…and I think a 7 but I’m still sorting all that out.

    6. What do you enjoy about daily life in the culture you live in?
    Street food and delivery services.

    7. Do you have a song that has been on repeat in this season?
    No Roots by Alice Merton

    8. What book are you currently reading or what’s on your to-read list?
    Just finished “The Tattoo Artist of Auschwitz” and currently listening to “Evidence Not Seen”

    9. Today, what’s the weather like where you are?
    Rainy.

    10. How do you usually end your days?
    Netflix or a book and falling asleep on the couch.

    1. Sarah Hilkemann September 16, 2019

      Thanks for joining in, Bekah! What did you think of the Tatoo Artist of Auschwitz? I keep seeing it pop up.

  18. Maria September 14, 2019

    Love reading all of these!

    1. Where do you live?
    Thailand – wayyyyy down in the south.

    2. If we stopped by to visit you, what is a dish or local drink that we absolutely must try?
    Hat Yai fried chicken – it’s famous here and for good, good reason.

    3. What is the longest planned layover you’ve had (not caused by delays or missed flights)?
    12 hours – Seoul airport. I was reading a book I could not put down so it actually went really fast.

    4. What is something you dislike that everyone else loves (from your passport or host culture)?
    Carrot cake. Funny thing is I didn’t like it in America and here it is one of the best-loved Western desserts.

    5. Do you know your Myers/Briggs type or Enneagram number? Any other personality typing inventory results?
    ENFP, 7w6 on the Enneagram

    6. What do you enjoy about daily life in the culture you live in?
    I’m immersed in university culture and that is really fun – the pop-up markets at night, bustling sports center and running track, general sense of community (Asian values on a university campus creates a fun atmosphere)

    7. Do you have a song that has been on repeat in this season?
    Sure do! It’s called “Boxes” by Ben Rector. I feel like I must have listened to it thousands of times.

    8. What book are you currently reading or what’s on your to-read list?
    Reading “The Way Thais Lead” and “Practicing the Presence of God.” Want to read “The Mother-in-Law”

    9. Today, what’s the weather like where you are?
    Rainy.

    10. How do you usually end your days?
    Talking with roommates and heading to bed too late. haha

    Reply

    1. Sarah Hilkemann September 16, 2019

      Hey Maria! So fun to read your answers to these questions. I do love the idea of the community of a university campus!

  19. Kim Hoyt September 14, 2019

    1. Where do you live? We returned to the U. S. three years ago and relocated to Las Vegas, Nevada, just over a year ago. Repatriated because of health issues I was having due to celiac diagnosed almost 5 years ago, and since being back in the states we’ve both had cancer. I’m still in treatment but the worst (chemo, surgery and radiation) is over; I’m on an oral chemo drug through next summer. Thankfully my husband only needed surgery. We’ve gotten involved in a small church plant here in the valley. The smallness and sense of community has been more comfortable after our years overseas, and we feel like God might be able to use us two old geezers to encourage, if nothing else.
    2. If we stopped by to visit you, what is a dish or local drink that we absolutely must try? While living overseas we picked up a fondness for “agua con gas” and one of our first purchases here was a Soda Stream. We have never done the flavors; just good old carbonated water is perfect in this desert heat! My husband has already sussed out all the Argentine restaurants for when an empanada craving hits.
    3. What is the longest planned layover you’ve had (not caused by delays or missed flights)? Ten hours in Buenos Aires.
    4. What is something you dislike that everyone else loves (from your passport or host culture)? Never developed a liking for yerba mate (an herbal tea) that everyone else is so fond of in Argentina.
    5. Do you know your Myers/Briggs type or Enneagram number? Any other personality typing inventory results? Enneagram Six, ISTJ
    6. What do you enjoy about daily life in the culture you live in? Although Vegas is a big city, it’s a lot like the (much smaller) city we lived in in Argentina. I love seeing mountains no matter which direction I look, and the climate and vegetation is so similar, it felt a lot more like coming “home” than our first 18 months back in the U.S. spent in the Midwest where I’d lived most of my life before going overseas.
    7. Do you have a song that has been on repeat in this season? The same song that touched me before moving overseas still moves me in ways I can’t articulate well: “Painting Pictures of Egypt” by Sara Groves.
    8. What book are you currently reading or what’s on your to-read list? “Stronger Than Death” by Rachel Pieh Jones (alone) and “I Think You’re Wrong (But I’m Listening): a guide to grace-filled political conversations” by Sarah Stewart Holland and Beth Silvers (with my husband)
    9. Today, what’s the weather like where you are? 100 degrees which feels quite pleasant after a summer with an average temperate around 112 degrees! The worst of summer heat is over and I’m looking forward to the gorgeous Vegas fall.
    10. How do you usually end your days? Reading.

    1. Sarah Hilkemann September 16, 2019

      Hi Kim, so fun to read your answers and get to know you! It sounds like it has been a rocky road since you’ve come back but joy radiates from your comment. 🙂

  20. Melissa September 16, 2019

    Too many questions to answer, so I picked a few!
    1. Where do you live? I’m Melissa, and I live in Vienna, Austria. I’ve lived here with my family for 14 years. We are immersed in the Austrian language & culture.
    2. If we stopped by to visit you, what is a dish or local drink that we absolutely must try? I would take you to an Austrian café for a delicious Melange (similar to a cappuccino) and Austrian cake.
    8. What book are you currently reading or what’s on your to-read list? I’m reading “The Silver Chair” by CS Lewis to my boys; then “The Church Planting Wife” by Christine Hoover

    Have a good day! Greetings from Vienna!

  21. Johanna September 17, 2019

    1 a hippy beach town next to the desert with goats and Bedouins.

    2. If we stopped by to visit you, what is a dish or local drink that we absolutely must try?
    Lemon with mint- it’s a wonderful drink
    Rice and molokhaya

    3. What is the longest planned layover you’ve had (not caused by delays or missed flights)?
    Spending the night in an airport hotel in Sweden on our way back to the states- so like 14 hours or so.
    But there was that time we decided to make our trip home to the states take a bit longer and we stopped in Portugal for 5 days!

    4. What is something you dislike that everyone else loves (from your passport or host culture)?
    Fooool it’s beans for breakfast, no thanks.

    5. Do you know your Myers/Briggs type or Enneagram number? Any other personality typing inventory results?
    I am an ESFJ and a 2 with a 3 wing

    6. What do you enjoy about daily life in the culture you live in? Hanging out with friends in their courtyards and drinking tea and coffee. And walking by the beach

    7. Do you have a song that has been on repeat in this season?
    I am really enjoying some of Hillsong’s newer stuff

    8. What book are you currently reading or what’s on your to-read list?
    The Boys in the Boat by Daniel James Brown. I read a ton and I am so thankful for the library app Libby with Overdrive. It’s amazing. You sync your library card to it and have access to everything from your home library that is digital!

    9. Today, what’s the weather like where you are?
    It was windy and in the low 90’s

    10. How do you usually end your days?
    Reading in bed, after the kids go to sleep I just want to have some “me time.”

    1. Sarah Hilkemann September 19, 2019

      Hey Johanna! I love Overdrive and the Libby app! My library has that too. 🙂 Also, agree on beans for breakfast. 🙂

  22. Joy September 19, 2019

    1. Where do you live? Tanzania East Africa
    2. If we stopped by to visit you, what is a dish or local drink that we absolutely must try? Our food here is fairly boring. The best I can suggest is to have you try eating Ugali (cornmeal and water made thick like playdough) eaten with your fingers, using your thumb to make a depression to scoop up the sauce.
    3. What is the longest planned layover you’ve had (not caused by delays or missed flights)? We used to spend 12 hours in London, not quite enough to go out to do much sight-seeing.
    4. What is something you dislike that everyone else loves (from your passport or host culture)? The pampering – mani, pedi, …. from my home country. I grew up a farm girl and have never made the change to liking those things.
    5. Do you know your Myers/Briggs type or Enneagram number? A clear Enneagram number 1. Thanks Velvet Ashes for introducing me to Enneagram!
    6. What do you enjoy about daily life in the culture you live in? Friendly helpful people
    7. Do you have a song that has been on repeat in this season? I Choose Joy
    8. What book are you currently reading or what’s on your to-read list? Mostly fiction. I read in the evenings and don’t have much brain power left for anything but ‘brain candy’.
    9. Today, what’s the weather like where you are? Lovely – perfect temperature. Sunny
    10. How do you usually end your days? Reading, playing a few games of Freecell.

    1. Sarah Hilkemann September 19, 2019

      Joy, thanks so much for joining in the introductions! I love your use of ‘brain candy’- it’s so true! 🙂

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