Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Last Day in Bangkok -

Hi All!  Wednesday morning here in Bangkok Thailand.  Kind of a cloudy day - does feel like about 85-90 out there though!  We had a big rain pour this morning earlier - but I think the Sun will be out soon again!

The plan today - our last day...is to walk over to the hospital this morning again - I have to meet the surgeon - one week after surgery today, if everything is healing properly.  I am feeling so much better and walking better too!  Not like an ole' granny - anymore!  

OK OK well I am a granny of my beautiful little Skyler (who by the way will be 2 years old on May 15th!!!! Can you believe that???) but maybe not quite feeling like a old granny - put it that way...ha! 

So at 11 am see Dr Yongsun and then between 2:00-3:00 pm this afternoon we have to go back to the Indonesian Embassy to pick up the passports which should be processed & have our new visa stamps in there for the balance of our time in Indonesia!  We are thankful to go back to Indonesia and still have the 2 months - sort out some things - mail off some things, maybe sell some items and just enjoy our many friends still!  Purchase 2 smaller suitcases as well...WE ARE SIZING DOWN!!! Can Ellen do that is the question????? She better! That's all I can say!  

Tomorrow our flight with Air Asia departs at around 8:30 am - so early to rise!  Again we fly to Kuala Lumpur Malaysia but this time we are flying to Yogjakarta instead of Semarang where we originally departed from.  Nick couldn't find a flight back to Semarang - so Yogja it is!  

When we arrive at 5 pm in Yogja, we will most likely find a taxi to bring us back to Salatiga. The drive to Salatiga is about 1.5 hrs - ..makes for a long day and lots of waiting at airports huh?  Although flying time in the air from here to Bangkok - straight that is - is only about 2.5 hrs altogether!  Changing flights checking in & out with suitcases & immigrations into these countries all takes time. 

So back to Indonesia tomorrow - Lord willing!

We will Blog again back in Salatiga!   

Hope you are all doing well - !  Hugs!  Warm hugs from us! 


Sunday, April 27, 2014

Just Uploaded the Pictures ~

Andreaz & a friend Yudi picked us up early Monday morning~  We had rented a car  & Andreaz kindly offered to drive us to Semarang!  We thank YOU again Andreaz to doing  this for us!
The new highway has finally opened up after 5 yrs in the making - so we were at the airport in an hour- WOW! How nice for all the people in Salatiga and surrounding areas to now have this new toll road opened - what a difference it has made in driving time!

We said good bye and off we went to Air Asia counter!

Tickets had been purchased online so check in went smoothly!  Yep - just one suitcase - nice!

Off we went on our first leg to Kuala Lumpur Malaysia, went through customs, picked up our suitcase and then checked in our suitcase again at the next desk and off to Thailand!

They do not forward your suitcase on to the next airline EVEN though we stayed with Air Asia - humm!

We met Kristine our neighbor and had a nice conversation with her!  She teaches English in Chiang Mai in Thailand but actually born in Palembang just like Nick and lived in Salatiga before taking this job in Thailand!  She said she wanted to experience teaching in a foreign country and even hoped to teach in the US some day!  It was very nice to chat with her!

Much success Kristine!!!!
Arrival in Bangkok ~

Yep through immigration again - and Nick collected the suitcase!  OK Nick - we made it - 5 pm gosh woke up at 5 am and we have been traveling ever since!

We took the airport bus into town and then caught a taxi to the hotel.

Next day ~ Tuesday I had the appointment with the surgeon at 11 am - might as well take care of business - that's why we're here!

The hospital~ Bangkok Medical Centre also known as Bangkok Nursing Home goes back to the early 1900 ~ it has grown into a beautiful facility!

Gosh - we are rest assured all will go well! 

The doctor Dr Yongsun was ready to see me and ordered the needed tests - ultrasound, blood and heart - and he asked when we wanted to have the surgery?  How about the next morning?
  He said fine!

7 am in the hospital and at 8:30 am they brought me into the change room.  And before I knew it I was rolled into the surgery room...waiting for the Dr to arrive.  I prayed lots of scripture and was so peaceful...just meditating on my Lord!  Ah....the peace!  When the doctor entered...it all went pretty fast - they must of given me the shot....I don't even recall - I was GONE!

The surgery itself took 1 hour the doctor said - and the recovery room 2 hrs - and I was wheeled into a very nice private room where I saw my Nick!  Yes waking up in recovery - and realizing it was already over...gosh I thank the Lord for His care, His peace and His guiding Hands ~  We are very very thankful! 

Thumbs Up!  Thank you Lord! 

Thank you Doctor Yongsun and nurses!
As you can see the room was really nice ~ even a couch for Nico! 

Bangkok is a BIG city!
 They kept me in the hospital one night.  Nico kept me company and brought the laptop in so we could get caught up with our email!

 The nurses were adorable and looked so cute in their nursing uniform - !  Sharp little outfits that were tailored - very very professional!

 So strange to see my name up there - yes it has been a LONG time since I stayed in a hospital - actually I thought about it - but it has been since I had my 2nd child - Jason!  Now that is a long time isn't it?  He is 34 years old!
 Dr Yongsun came in the next day - the day of release - and he showed me on the TV screen my surgery on a DVD!  Gosh that was quite amazing - Nick & I thought!  We saw the hole - and the mesh put in - all through the laproscopic incisions~ I had 3 incisions.  2 on the left side - and one below the belly.  Interesting!  He was very kind - and very detailed...we had lots of questions!  He had me walk to see how I was responding ...and said I was very "strong" - "Thank you Doctor...does that mean I get to go home now?"

Yes it does!  So at 3 pm they released me and off we went down the street to the outside coffee shop! So good just to sit in the Sun for a little bit before going back to the hotel!  And that is what we did - had some coffee & a snack just before we headed back to our hotel room - walking slow and careful...like a little old lady I did!  ha! 
I was sent home with 5 prescription's - gosh...my stomach was blown up with a lot of "hot air" as the saying goes!  Ha! But as you can see - everything has gone well...Ellen is following Doctor's orders and we are slowly but surely feeling better day by day!  Today Sunday - is the best! 

Again Thank YOU ALL for your care, prayers and concern!  Received so many sweet messages  ~ it gave us great comfort!  Much Love to all and thank you from the bottom of my heart!

We appreciate your love & friendship! Each and everyone of you! 

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Bangkok Nursing Hospital / Medical Centre

Hi Everyone ~ Nick brought the computer- so I can give you all an update!

We arrived in Bangkok, from Java on Monday evening 5 pm...and arrived at our Christian Guest House at 6 pm!  We had an appt at 1 pm on Tuesday with the surgeon - he looked at it and ordered a Ultrasound - and yes confirmed a hernia.  After the ultrasound we went back to his office~

 - and we sat and talked about it.  He also looked at the 2nd lump much smaller but said it was not a hernia.  My rib ~

So he asked when would you like the operation done?  We said tomorrow?  Yes that can happen at 9 am...all right let's do it!

He explained there was two ways to do the surgery: one was open from the front and put in the mesh and then close it - OR - have it done with laproscopic (1 in cession for the camera and do the surgery through the other 2 additional holes made - which after explaining it - was the one we decided on. So he sent me to get a blood test & a EKG and then the EKG was not accurate - so we were advised to do a ECOgram - the reason the EKG was not good is because funny enough my heart is not in a slant position but is left-right positioned...strange!  But the ECO was good and no heart problems - the heart specialist said I was born with it and that it was no problem...just left-right positioning!  She said she had not experienced that in Thailand yet. 

When all was done at 6:30pm we headed back to the hotel- went out to have something light to eat and rested.  Early Rise in the morning!

At 7 am this morning we checked in - and at 9:30 am I was rolled into the surgery room.  Then at 12 noon I woke up in recovery!  The doctor said all went well.  

We have really good care - a private room too!

Just wanted let you know that all is well!  The Lord has totally covered me in His Peace & Strength!  So thankful to Him and all of you that prayed for me!  We are on the road to recovery! 

God Bless you - !  

Love from Ellen & Nico

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Easter Sunday - Selamat Paskah!

 Easter Sunday!  We are so thankful to go to church and celebrate together the resurrection day of our Lord! 
 He is Risen....YES! He is Risen Indeed!
Nick & I are grateful to the Lord for His offering & sacrifice - and we are so thankful to God for the  Joy & Peace he has given us in our hearts!  We are thankful to celebrate Easter here in Indonesia with all our neighbors and friends we have made in these past months!

 We all brought prepared dishes of food from home and had a nice lunch afterwards! 

After the meal, the children would enjoy their annual Easter egg hunt! 
 Todd gave us a good Word from John 20 & 21 and Gustavo lead us in prayer and Donovan & Andrea led us in song!


 Good Friday ~  Friday, Nick & I did a much needed walk...3 hrs - and by the time we returned back to the house - we were cooking!  It was HOT out there!  But thankfully we did get some exercise - we needed it!  


 Kristian & Lianne invited us over for a Dutch meal!  Beppie joined us!  We have served it to our friends back home: potatoes, carrots and onions mashed together.  They had the meatballs & Dutch brautworst/sausage with it to...my it was good! 
 We had the honor of finishing up the last one with them...yes Kris' parents had come to visit from Holland and had brought them 3 of them ~  So it was a big treat to enjoy it together!

 Kris dished up for us ~ they did a good job....HEERLIJK!
 Yes meat ball and friend potatoes too!

After supper - Kris read from the Bible and also a devotional from Max Lacado - very good - it made the evening so special to remember Good Friday together!  

We had a wonderful evening and we talked about meeting and doing a little "reunion" dinner when we are all in Holland in August!  A great idea! Yes! Let's do it Kris, Lian en Beppie!

They are the sweetest!

We have made arrangements with our friend Andreaz to rent a car and drive us to the airport in the morning!  He will pick us up at the house here at 6 am!  Thank you Andreaz - for offering to do this for us~ we greatly appreciate it!

So next Blog family & friends will be from Bangkok, Thailand!

A Blessed Easter to you all!  

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Easter Weekend & Monday we Travel Out ~

This week with Passover and today Maudy Thursday, tomorrow Good Friday and then Sunday Easter we are ever so thankful in our hearts to remember the hope and love and strength we have in our God Tuan Allah - yes He is our Hope & Strength for each new day!  He give us the plan and direction - and having the hope of life eternal...He gives us much peace & joy!

After Sunday - Nick & I are departing with Air Asia to Bangkok, Thailand.  Our visa expires on Monday the 21st of April and so we will have to re-apply outside of Indonesia to re-enter again.  

Our plan at first was to go to Singapore - but things have changed so we cancelled the flight to Singapore (thankfully due to a return flight change the airline made-we were able to receive a full refund) we thank the Lord for His favor!  So now it is Thailand instead. 

We will be leaving Asia in June to head towards Europe and Holland to my son & family and also all our relatives there.  So it is important to go to Bangkok now so to be prepared for our continued travels in June. 

We want to get any medical appointments out of the way.  This hospital in Thailand - BNH which is Bangkok Nursing Home is a great hospital to come to and have any and all needed surgeries done.  It has been a while since both Nick & I have had any check-ups done, so this trip will be important.

I have since about 3 months a lump which we think is a hernia (epigastric hernia - official name!) and it needs to be attended to first. 

I had mentioned this briefly before, I think- but our friends in Cambodia Jerry & Wilma have all their medical needs done in Bangkok as well.  In those 12 yrs they have been in Cambodia - they have had their annual check-ups, dental and any needed surgeries done at BNH....So Jerry & Wilma both highly recommended it to us!
We have visited the hospital before entering into Indonesia for the first time, back in Sept. several months ago.  So we are quite comfortable with the thought of doing surgery, if needed.  

There is a Guest House very close to the hospital - walking distance - and so that too is great & convenient for us for any needed follow-ups! 

We will keep you posted with the process!  

This is not what we had thought to have to do here - have surgery but this should be a small procedure...I am told.  We will certainly get rid of our larger suitcases and size down...that will be a smart move right?  We always seem to think "oh we can do it - just let me" and then...well your body can only take so much and I guess our muscles aren't as strong as they use too!

So just to keep you all posted dear family & friends!  Not to be concerned - all will go well!  God goes before us and prepares the Way!  We do covet your prayers!

It takes 3 days to apply for the new visa at the Indonesian Embassy in Thailand - so once that is also in order - we will book a return flight back to Indonesia when we are sure about things.  We might be in Thailand 7-10 days we think.  

Our laptop is going - so you can contact us by personal email, FB or on the blog!

Hugs to All and Yes a Blessed Easter Weekend to you all!  We have much to rejoice about!  Nick & I are Ever so Thankful !!!

Our Friends and Neighbors over for Dinner~

Pak Jono & his wife bu Kasum and their daughter Intans came over for dinner last weekend!  

We had a really nice time - with Intans there for a while - she speaks English and then when she went home to study for her exams - well a whole lot of hand signals, "words" kita in broken sentences..kalimat...and we do our best and have a lot of laughter too!  I always wish we could speak much better - we try and they understand a little English too...!

Jono & Kasum decided to use one dish for the fruit cocktail I had made and then we all laughed...they fed one another the fruit!  So cute!  They are wonderful neighbors- tetangga and wonderful friends- teman!

People speak to one another with respect saying miss or mrs, mister or mas - so you will never hear then say your name directly "Ellen" - no it will be either bu Ellen or Oma Ellen (like some call us - the younger crowd-grandma that is!) Nick is Mr Nick or Opa Nick or Pak Nick.  (Ba)Pak means Mr or father, Ibu is Mrs or mother or Mbak, Mas means brother and and if there was an older person and a younger person the older might be call Pak Nico and the younger one Mas Nico.  Very respectful we think!  

It is very uncomfortable for people to call you here by your first name...it just doesn't happen.  I know for us this is very uncommon and it takes a lot of getting use to to call someone Pak or Bu before their personal name.  

We are learning!  

Another thing which is nice to share: people will always ask to enter before coming into your house...Silakan saya boleh Masuk...please may I come in...Silakan duduk...please sit.  Also they will ask permission to leave...permisie? This is polite...you just don't get up and start for the door.  First you ask...then the person in the house says yes..and then they stand up and shake hands before leaving...always correct and always with a very cordial entrance and exit. 

Most people when they come will have something to give...either a little dish of something or a snack...but always a kindness or something is brought.  I think personally this is left from the Dutch era...because even now in Holland we still come over someone house with flowers or a goodie...it is a thoughtful gesture of kindness and it is so cute to see that here in Indonesia!

Oh something else...I very much like...always eye contact...when someone speaks to you - they turn to you and give you full contact and complete attention!  Oh boy this is such a courtesy...oh we can certainly learn from our friends here.  What a nice attribute - don't you think?  

Every country has special things we can share from one another!  We are a melting pot of God's creation!  And He has done a good work! 


Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Elsiha's Birthday......Happy Birthday to you! Salamat Ulang Tahun Elisha!

 Happy Birthday Elisha!  April 15th ~

 Kris & Lianne too came by to wish him a special day! 

 Beppie made Elisha - his favorite cake....Homemade "a la Beppie"

 Carrot Cake...and believe me...it is good!


 Then Elisha & Beppie invited us to stay for a bite to eat...which we gladly did.  This Chef makes a good portion of rice goreng! 

Then after dinner - the staff Andreaz, Anita and Agustine came with a chocolate cake and we all sang for Elisha!  

"Happy Birthday to you - Elisha!"

 What a nice surprise....!
 It was a very nice afternoon & early evening ~  Thank you for the invite!