Friday, September 24, 2010

Ethiopia, Day Two

Ben and I decided to go exploring on our own before breakfast. There is a supermarket up the road from the hotel and I was really craving bananas and fruit in general. Once we were outside the hotel gates we met Danny, a boy who lives across the road in a yellow and grey tin shed. We had heard of Danny from other adoptive parents, that he is very charming, which he was, but also asks all the parents for money. Danny is a very sweet boy, 12 years old, who speaks excellent English and "escorted" us to the market. Our original destination was closed so we ended up at a mom and pop type store. Danny carried our bag for us and attempted to teach us Amharic words and phrases. He spoke of Howard University and Washington DC. He asked us what music we liked and in between telling us he liked Akon and Shakira he asked if we knew John Denver. Then Danny busted out with a verse of "Take Me Home, Country Roads" which was amazing. Ben and I are of the "Hate the game, don't hate the player" mentality when it comes to giving money to people. If Danny is scamming us we assume it's because he is helping to support his family. He saw an opportunity in the families that come to the hotel across from his home and was very smart to take it, who are we to judge?

After breakfast we were off to a museum. Originally we had planned on going to the National Museum. But it seems that Lucy is actually in the United States. Ironic. We ended up going to the Ethnographic Museum at was once the palace of Haile Selassie. It had great information on Ethiopia, particularly on the people living in southern Ethiopia which is where TK is from.

We did get to eat at Lucy's Cafe for lunch and a traditional coffee ceremony. For the uninformed, Ethiopia is the birthplace of coffee and Ethiopians take it very seriously. (Side note: the food has been excellent here! Ben and I love to eat and Ethiopia does not disappoint.)

After lunch we got to spend a few hours with TK at the care center. This boy has been a dream come true for the few hours we've gotten to spend with him. He's content to sit in our laps and check out the action around him. He loves to chew and bang things. He gurgles and babbles and is just a very happy boy. The nannies were a little late with our children's dinner and TK ended up falling asleep in my arms. Yes, my heart melted. The only time we've heard him cry was when he was tired but it was only a few seconds and he was back to his agreeable self. Did I mention we're in love with this kid?

Mental photos to keep:
Wedding procession on the street near the National Museum (cars covered in flowers)
Graduates of University of Addis Ababa taking their photos in front of the Ethnographic Museum


Sheree said...

OMG! I just want to kiss his little cute feet!!! My heart is melting...I can only imagine how you two are feeling! It is finally real!!!

semiferalmama said...

Everything I read said the Ethnographic museum is one of the best in Africa. It was closed when we were there. The National Museum is a bit of a disappointment, you actually didn't miss that much.
Ahhh, Danny. The two English words he did not seem to know when I was there "Enterprising" - him, "Agnostic" - me. I gave him money after he sincerely helped me get some cash exchanged for a good rate.
I was incredibly disappointed when I asked him if he would move back to Ethiopia after he became a doctor in the USA. He said no way, the money is better in the US.