Can you believe it? We are now officially halfway!! This is kind of a big deal for me - hey, I haven't even finished my scrapbook from last year.
Day Five was mainly spent leisurely traveling down to Awasa, a sizeable city outside of Addis. After a pretty intensive Day Four, our team leader, Mike, graciously let us all sleep in a little at our compound before cramming into Land Cruisers, yet again. Since the drive to the village was so squished and hot, we decided to take our time with this trip. After attending the MAKBC staff devotions, which Kenny led, we came back to the guest house to pack and eat a quick lunch before setting off. About halfway into the trip, we abruptly pulled off the road and into a sunny, grassy little hotel. One look into our scary, colored eyes surrounded by pale white skin and the staff were all too glad to let us invade their outside dining patio. We used the reprieve enjoyed breathing in the fresh air, drinking the strong coffee, and laughing with each other.
|(L-R) Mike K., the guy who made us laugh, and Mike M., the guy who made our trip happen|
|(L-R) Pastor Kenny and Binyam (Alemnesh's son, our translator and friend) enjoying a story|
|Dave enjoying his coffee and his God|
There was an interesting building in the back of the hotel, but the guard was adamant that we not take pictures of it. I'm not sure why all the caution was needed since I'm pretty sure it was just a bar.
After our coffee break, we hopped back in the car, stopping once more for some wildlife along the side of the road... Camels. Of course.
Although the car ride was pretty long, I was able to use to journal, steal Elise's copy of Future Grace, and think about the fact that I was within driving distance of the town that Lizzie and Sadie were from. After such a success with finding Sami (no idea what I'm talking about? click here for enlightenment), I was entertaining the though that maybe, just maybe, I could find their birth father. We knew a man in Awasa, Adhanom, who had found the birth father and brought him to Addis when he needed to appear in court to finalize the adoption, and I was hoping Adhanom could find the father again.
During the car ride, however, I was content to look out the window at the rural villages whizzing by and imagining that one of them might have been Lizzie and Sadie's. I marveled at the fact that the old man walking along the road might be the man who gave life to my sisters. And I got teary when little girls covered in dust waved to us as we drove by - they might have been Lizzie and Sadie had God not called us to adopt.
We arrived to a rainy Awasa around seven that night. We all ate supper in the hotel's restaurant, thoroughly enjoying the Western food and TV. None of us had any idea what was going on with all the revolutions, so we were all surprised to read the expanded list of countries in revolt. Adhanom, who's nephews and nieces my dad had helped bring to America, came over to eat supper with us, and told me how much he loved "Mr. Joel" several times. I think he was rather hurt that I was staying at a hotel and not at his family's house. He made me promise that the next time my family was in town, we'd stay with him. I talked with him and Alemnesh about finding the birth father and they both agreed that it was crucial that I find a phone number or address for him. I tried to call Mom and Dad several times on our team's cell phone several times until finally the network wasn't overwhelmed (it was almost impossible to get a call through in Ethiopia from 6-8 because so many other people were making calls). I got several names of other people to call to try to find out info, but nothing concrete. I went to bed discouraged, but trusting that if God wanted to me meet the birth father, he'd make it happen.