Friday, January 21, 2011

Day 4: January in Ethiopia

Hello again,

Here we are, our last day in Ethiopia! It is bittersweet. We are ready to come home and see our family and friends but are leaving great friends behind!

We showed up at Embassy at 8 am, waited, raised my right hand swore to tell the truth, signed some papers, was told to wait some more, and finally was handed a brown sealed envelope to deliver to immigration in DC and a passport and visa to get Sweet T (or maybe the new nickname will be wild child) into the country. As soon as we land in the US she will be a US citizen.

After Embassy I returned to the guest house. Friends were waiting to hear the news, and cheer for me. They had held a big prayer circle for me at 8am. I walked in feeling bittersweet. I was very excited for us, but very sad for the other two Embassy families that I traveled with that are not returning with me. Those families will be staying at least some of next week. Please keep praying for them.

They waited for me to get back from Embassy so that we could all travel out to the Gorge (the Grand Canyon of Ethiopia). It was a 2 hour drive outside of the city. We truly saw the country side, huts, mud houses, and incredibly beautiful scenery. On the way our driver took us by an Ethiopian family home, a hut, and let us meet them and go in the hut! What an experience. There was a small bed that the parents sleep in (it did not look very comfortable), a place on the floor for the kids to sleep, a fire, an injera basket, clothes lines, a bucket for hand washing clothes, and that was about it! Oh, and they share the hut with their animals. We took this family clothes, shoes, snacks, etc. It was a neat experience.

We then drove a little further and stopped by where people were selling hand made baskets and soft marble cross necklaces. It was overwhelming; so many people trying to get you to buy their baskets. We then drove further stopping every little bit throwing out hand fulls of pens to students begging for pens to do their school work. We finally reached the gorge. It was a beautiful breath taking site. Of course the moment we started to walk and take a look, Tamenech yells shint.... if you guessed that there were no restrooms you are correct. We went about a hundred rocks over and to a tree, watching out for cactus so she could squat (another Ethiopia experience). We stayed there for a while enjoying the beauty and peace (other than more students trying to sell cross necklaces and beg for pens).

We then went to a beautiful restaurant overlooking the Gorge. It was the most amazing setting and view. Yes, Tamenech once again had injera, this time with vegetables.

We then started our journey back to the guest house. We had kids singing in Amharic, carrying on long conversations (about who only knows), some taunting, and some potty talk as we could hear the laughing random words and then shint and caucau! We were about an hour into the drive when you guessed it Tamenech yelled shint. So David stepped on the gas and took us to one of Ethiopia's finest rest stops in the middle of no where and if you don't believe it Shannon Ewing has photos to prove it. Yes once again we dodged some cacti and cow dung, and squatted.... Another Ethiopia experience! We are ready for restrooms!

We are now back at the guest house packing up the last of our things, going to have a quick dinner and head to the airport! See you all in the US and thank you for following our journey. Please continue to pray for safe travels and adjustments for our family!

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