Sunday, October 4, 2009

Our Trip To Ethiopia Day 6 - Thursday

Tired of riding

No car seat & in the front seat?!?!?

Love this picture of the Ethiopian flag

Addis Ababa from Entoto Mountain

The market place at the base of the mountain

Tsegay and Annsleigh

Annsleigh and her nurse

This day was one excursion we wouldnt miss. We got picked up at the Melkam Guest House at approximately 9AM for a ride up to Entoto mountain. This was an absolutely beautiful short ride. At the base of the mountain was the open markets where we are to shop on Saturday. Masses of people everywhere. Then as you work your way up the mountain the mood completely changed. Everything became more beautiful....the air cooled and cleared & it felt soooooo good to breath fresh air. We all enjoyed taking some deep breaths. There was still mud sided houses & shacks with mud roofs to live in but they dotted the hillside with grassy spaces in between. These children can play in the grass! Still had lots of women carrying heavy loads of sticks or water buckets, or bushels up the mountain.....and lots and lots of little donkeys trotting along with similar loads. They looked like they were doing it effortlessly. We stopped near the top for great pictures. Funny that from far away, Addis Ababa looks orderly & quaint. At the top we also visited a couple of very old Christain/Catholic churces and the old emperor and emperess castle. That was something to see....except the beggars outside the church. Did not expect that...and our tour guide scolded them for bothering us. From here on ...we were discouraged from handing out to the beggars because once you do, you will be hounded and harassed. Its hard to not give give give, but we started to get used to saying no. Well, the whole time Annsleigh of course slept in the sling. Thank God for the sling! When we came back down the mountain we were the only ones that needed to go to the Melkam so 1/2 way back our van stops and we are told to get out and get in this other van with someone we have no idea who and off we go....and everytime you go somewhere, it doesnt matter if you've been there before or not, they always go a different way. So, we drove along felt like forever and we began to wonder why we would trust someone to tell us get out here and go in a strange country....when lo and behold, we finally pull up to the Melkam....just very strange how we never really knew who we were with or where we were going....but we made it. Anyway, back at the Melkam just in time for a much needed nap which we didnt get because Annsleigh was now wide awake.....and again soaked thru her diaper, outfit and sling. We got picked back up at about 2PM so we could go back to the HOH to take pictures of 2 babys for some waiting families back home and to take our donations there. We get close to the HOH and our van cannot get closer to the HOH because there are big fuel trucks parked all in that road and one truck just parked in the middle of it all. We sat in the van for awhile and finally we are told to just get out and walk. By now, civilians have congregated around the van. So we get out and have to walk about 1/2 block & Im shielding my baby from the coughing people around there. The stench was horrible too...When we got to the HOH Annsleigh was asleep in her sling again which I was grateful for because I thought at least none of the nanny's would be able to take her from me. Well, we asked to see the crib she slept in & the nannys prepared the crib next to it so she could lay down. After they went thru all that trouble, I hated to not oblige so I reluctantly laid her down. She stayed asleep & we left the room. We went a few doors down and took pics and videos of both babys. I knew how precious these pics and videos would be for the 2 families back home. That was all we lived for when we were in their shoes. When we were done taking pics, we went out the door onto the walkway upstairs and there Annsleigh her nurses arms, all dressed up in a little traditional Ethiopian dress complete with head wrap. How precious was that? And I asked her to show me how to do the wrap. Now I felt bad for not letting Annsleigh's nurse just hold her as much as she wanted. I have the rest of my life with Annsleigh. and she had to let go....well, this time Annsleigh did not really cry when she left the nurse to come to me. We then were ready to go, but we were told our ride was still out down the street corner so the driver walked us to the corner. I did not like walking out there with my baby....too many people loitering, coughing, hacking, peeing....I would try to walk around & away from the crowd. We get to the corner & our van is not there, but bouncing up the road to the corner...full of the other families who are going to the HOH also for some go walk back to the HOH & everyone gets out of the van & we just have to wait around until everyone is ready to leave....Kinda confusing....kinda tiring....Anway finally we leave and on the way back to the Melkam the van stopped at a grocery store for more formula & cereal so we can replace what the HOH gave us. By the way on the very first day you pick up your baby, the van can take you to the corner grocery for formula/diapers/bottled water. And if you stay at the Melkam, it is in what they say is a good neighborhood although you wouldnt know it by looking, and one day Brad & a couple of dads walked to the grocery around the corner from the Melkam to get more water and formula. Brad said it was fine...he felt very one harassed them (beggars) & the grocery store folks were very helpful. We got back to the Melkam once again exhausted and once again Annsleigh soaked thru those Ethiopian disposable diapers. Tonight we had to try everything to get her to sleep, even dancing. Sucking on the empty bottle worked. We slelpt wrestless again....End of day 6


Missy said...

Thanks for another great update and thanks for the pics of our little one!!! :)

elisa said...

Fran, I so love these updates and hope to journal as well as you have! I got my video yesterday, we have watched it about 20 times already. Thanks so much!