It was a God thing...
I asked for a 7:45 wake up call this morning after debating between 7:45-8:00. I also got everything ready for our full day of embassy, lunch and shopping and had just gotten out of the shower when there was a knock at the door. We were told our schedule was wrong and we'd have to leave in seven minutes (an hour earlier than expected). Thank goodness I had gotten what we'd need together because I can get dressed in a rush much better than I can think about what we might need for the day in a rush.
After throwing some clothes on and rushing downstairs and grabbing a banana and yogurt to eat in the van we were ready to go. Or so we thought. Somehow we realized that mom and Madison didn't have their passports and would need them to get into the embassy with us. Otherwise they would have been stuck outside in the vans waiting the 2-3 hours it took us to get through the embassy appointments. Poor mom ran up the five flights of stairs (it's even hard to walk slowly up the stairs in this altitude) and back down.
When we got to the embassy it was a little intimidating. There aren't many smiles going around. Once we got through a couple security checkpoints we found ourselves in a waiting room with probably 30 other people. After waiting maybe 30-45 minutes they started calling people from our group from the youngest adopted child/children to the oldest. We were all excited/nervous for each other as we had heard stories of people not passing their embassy appointments for reasons beyond their control and either having to go home without their children to wait for things to get worked out, or staying in Ethiopia longer. When it was our turn Tilahun took us upstairs to the window of our officer. He, Jeff, was very nice and asked us some basic questions which T was able to help us answer! WE PASSED! We headed back downstairs to wait for the rest of our group to have their appointments and, praise God, everyone passed!! We had reason to celebrate!!!
Today, we ate lunch at a restaurant called Lucy's. It's next door to the museum that houses "Lucy" the second oldest skeletal remains discovered. It is estimated she lived over 3.2 million years ago. It was a beautiful place to eat and a nice day! It was so fun to see everyone interacting with their children and to see all of these new families just beginning their journeys together!
I love all of the flowers hidden here and there in Ethiopia. If all you saw were the streets of Ethiopia, you would never believe these hidden treasures were nearby!
After lunch we headed out to shop in a different area. We didn't stay too long, but I was able to get a couple Ethiopia soccer jerseys and a fun wall hanging. We also bought a soccer ball for Robel's kids. Robel runs a street ministry in Ethiopia. He helps boys living on the streets to get things to sell to make money so they won't have to beg or steal for food. He also gets them enrolled in school and makes sure they attend. He is making a huge impact on these kids and we hope to some day go back and help! In the meantime a family has set up a Facebook page for this ministry called Into the Street of Ethiopia. You should check it out!
We saw several businesses called Sami's. I'm thinking that is what we will be calling Sam as he gets older.
Oh, how I long to go back to capture more images when I can focus on my photography. The colors and textures in Ethiopia are amazing and the people are beautiful!!
This is Robel! He gives everything he has to God!
One of the views from our guest house.
After shopping we went back to the guest house and had about an hour to rest before we left for Dave and Christy's. We had quite the ride to Dave and Christy's. We definitely were learning to trust David, our driver!! Once we arrived at Bingham we headed to the gym where Christy was supposed to be overseeing a playoff basketball game. It was eventually canceled because the Italian team failed to show up which meant more time to hang out. We had another fabulous meal of spaghetti. By this time my sore throat pain was turning severe. I was getting to the point where I couldn't think about anything else. Christy graciously gave me a disolvable codeine pill and I headed strait to bed when we got home. The codeine did wonders so I was able to get a good night's rest. And, guess who else slept all night too! Go Yacob!!!
This makes me excited for these kiddos. They have twin neices in Ethiopia that their aunt and uncle are in the process of adopting!