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After many grueling days, we finally head to Addis Ababa Ethiopia.
I must admit it is fun being picked up and hanging out with the foreign Prime Minister and his wife. I could get a bit of a ‘big head’ being with such a beloved man and being saluted. Those of you that know his amazing story understand the pleasure of his people seeing him a free man. I’m quite sure that Tim and I had our room upgraded after being brought to registration by Tamrat Layne.
Ethiopia held many meetings, small groups and sight seeing challenges. Very few people have cars as it it the 3rd poorest country in the world. We were blessed in being able to get around. We had a special day of driving several hours into the country side in a two car tandem. The amazing rich green of the hills mixed with immense poverty was quite an shock to the eyes.
The roads were sprinkled with people walking miles with water carrying containers. Our cars were constantly stopped by flocks of sheep, cows and other shepherds. This part I liked. I did not like however the immense number of roaming hungry dogs.
The homes are grass huts with dirt floors. The smoke from the inside cooking fires spiraled out from each little shelter. Yet Gods beauty was overwhelming.
The tired farmer men actually have human yokes around their bodies to direct their oxen in tilling the ground. They mostly grow a particular grain used in making their very strange staple like bread called Injure. They use this somewhat sour flat thin spongy bread to pick up their food with. So utensils are never needed. Always hard for me to get used to. But I learned to like the taste.
One of the small groups we attended was in a well to do, by their standard, home. All through our meeting the family cow was mooing. I loved it. After we were treated to some wonderful fresh yogurt made specially by our noisy friend. It was delicious. To really make it Ethiopian, we added a special hot pepper. Very healthy and I was proud of Tim for trying it.
Finally the day came to visit Life Center, the widows and Orphans.
When our car arrived at the gate, their was a hush. Sitting in the courtyard was what seemed like hundreds of faces. Both small and teen age children, plus colorfully dressed widows. Some with baby’s hidden quietly under gauze garments incase nursing became necessary.
I’m sure this is what a dignitary or presidents wife must feel like when arriving at a location and having all eyes on them.
Mulu had it all set up to really make us, the Americans, that have done so much for them, feel honored. And we did. It was reality however that we were really representing all of you.
After the long boring ‘must have’ speech by the token communist spokesman, I was able to address the crowd with Mulu’s interpretation. The clapping and unique yodel sound they create with their tongues, filled the air.
After passing out hearty meat sandwiches and egg sandwiches for the Muslims, I was honored with a beautiful locally made scarf. Very sweet.
One of my biggest thrills was to meet our little ‘cover girl’ whose picture I used on our brochure. She’s now of course two years older and well taken care of. I also met some of the orphans that you have adopted for a monthly fee. Mulu has made sure they know who is supporting them and I was blessed to be the one that received the hugs. Thank you. See pictures below.
It’s not easy getting to and from Africa. But OH SO WORTH it. Our travels home started Sunday evening. (Saturday in the USA) and got us home Monday USA time or Tues African time. It went like this. Addis Ethiopia to Nairobi Kenya. Kenya to Amsterdam and Amsterdam to LAX.
Our hearts are full with gratitude for Gods traveling mercies. My head is ringing with the most frequent question asked of all, “when are you coming back.” It’s a both sweet and bothersome question. I feel like firing right back, “don’t you know how old I am?” They just want us to love them. I made a deal with God. If he wanted me to go, He would have to show me the way, and He did.
An Amazing Journey and we will not forget.
Please enjoy some of our pictures. There are many more if interested.