As for me, I know of nothing else but miracles. - Walt Whitman

Saturday, November 15, 2014

My Trip to Ethiopia, Days 9 and 10

Sunday and Monday, October 5 & 6, 2014

My morning view:

Today was my first ever "tourist" day in Addis Ababa. It was Wass's day off, and he spends his Sundays with his family. But he said that since we are his family, too, he would spend it with us as a way to thank us for everything. :) He picked us up at Ember, and off we went. First, we stopped by a small shop owned by a former HH special mother. She was the one that braided Shana's hair several times last summer, and she ran across the street to give us big hugs. It was good to see her again!

Then, Wass took us to Tomoca Coffee, Entoto Mountain, several small shops, the Lion Zoo, and the National Museum. He is an awesome tour guide, and we had a great time.

At Tomoca, we ordered drinks and lots of  bagged coffee to bring back to the U.S, of course.

Entoto Mountain:

The mountain is covered in Eucalyptus trees. Their aroma fills the air.

 A man on the mountain thought Kerri and I needed to buy these hats. We refrained, and it didn't even take much willpower! :)

The Lion Zoo. It was very disconcerting when the lions roared.

The National Museum:

These ancient water pots are from around the time of the Queen of Sheba:

An ancient door lintel:

The bones of Lucy, the oldest known human being, were discovered in Ethiopia.

The crown jewels. These were inlaid with all sorts of precious stones, and Kerri and I were amazed that there wasn't more security around them...just a simple, locked, glass case with doors so crooked that there was a gaping hole in one of the corners. 

Lots of art:

We went to Sishu, an old warehouse that has been turned into a restaurant, for lunch. There we enjoyed awesome bacon cheeseburgers and fries. I sat there looking around the place, and all of a sudden I noticed that my missionary friends, Gary and Peggy from Ziway, Ethiopia were sitting across the room in a corner! They just came to Addis this morning. It was great to see them again, and we visited for awhile about their work and the schools they run. 

We drove through this residential area on the way to lunch:

Wass then took us back to Hannah's Hope, where we hung out with the kids for awhile. Then we walked back to Ember and visited with Vilma (from New York) and Dolly (from Scotland). It was so interesting to hear their stories and see how God is working through them.

One of my little buddies at HH....who just came home to Ohio as I typed this post!

Back at Ember:

We got our luggage together and changed for our trip home. After awhile, Wass came and picked us up to take us to the airport, and Mathewos rode part of the way with us. At Bole, we said goodbye and checked in, and then Kerri and I did a little more shopping. After we went through security and entered the gate area, we visited with a lady from Arizona who had been doing some work in Burundi and Rwanda. The power went out several times as we sat there. We soon boarded another looonnngg 
flight, and I was trapped by the window. I didn't sleep a wink, but there was a kind Ethiopian man beside me that made sure I had everything I needed. He even asked the flight attendant several times to get me some food and drink. :) When he needed a pen to fill out his customs form, I gave him mine and told him he could keep it, so he gave me some gum in return. He said it was a very good flight because we helped each other. :)

We finally made it Washington was so good to be back in the U.S! I had a terrible headache from lack of sleep, but little did I know what the day would hold..... Kerri and I went through customs, baggage claim, baggage check, ticketing, and security, and then bought cookies and smoothies at Potbelly Sandwich Works. I was able to call and talk to Chris again!

We soon said goodbye and separated to head to our gates...Kerri was flying to Portland, while I was supposed to be back in Indy by early afternoon. Chris left work early and drove to Indy to pick me up. However, my flight to Indy was delayed due to heavy winds. Then, it was ultimately cancelled because of mechanical problems. There was no other flight to get me back to Indy until around midnight, and then I would have the extra 3 hour drive home. So I changed my flight to go through Chicago and then to Fort Wayne. Poor Chris had driven to Indy for nothing, so he spent an extra 5 hours on the road. But, I was just glad to be going home!

I found my new gate and discovered that my Chicago connection had been delayed, and there was now no way to make it in time for my connection to Fort Wayne. So I had to rebook again. This time, I was booked on another Chicago connection, which ended up being delayed as well. By this time, I wanted to cry as I just wanted to get home and nobody would let me! I was soooooo tired. I made it to Chicago, though, and then got back to Fort Wayne at about 12:30 a.m. on Tuesday. Chris met me at the airport with chocolates and roses.....I was so grateful to see him again, even though not much was registering anymore due to my lack of sleep. Of course, my luggage was lost somewhere.....I had changed flights and airlines several times, and no one knew where it had ended up. Thankfully, it showed up in Fort Wayne about 3 days later.

The lights of Chicago:

By the time I arrived home, I had been awake for almost 52 hours. It was so good to collapse into my own bed! And so ends the saga of my Fall 2014 trip to Addis Ababa and Gambella, Ethiopia....

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