Hello Brandon and families!
I'm here in one of the --- offices at the Addis Abeba guest house, it's currently 6:36 pm, which means it's 4:36 am in Washington. I'm happy to say that we all got here safely (after over 30 hours of flights and airports) and our bags are all here...if not a little wet from the torrential downpour in Dulles. We spent today in a whirlwind of orientation meetings-everything from medical advice to the work of --- here in Ethiopia to how our account works here; it was a busy day to say the least. The short term coordinator, Leila, is really wonderful. We spent a ton of time with her today, asking all sorts of questions-most of which probably sounded pretty stupid. We went to a local restaurant for lunch (delicious and wonderfully spicy Injera!) and then to a little coffee shop where we had sugar with some coffee in it. I don't even like coffee, but it was pretty good. Overall, we're still in the process of acclimating, but it's going well.
Leila taught us some Amharic phrases today, none of which I can remember at this moment, but I'll work on that and impress you all upon our return. It was pretty funny to listen to us try to make sounds that are pretty much impossible for English speakers to make: like the khak sound that comes from the top of your throat...we're working on it. Everyone laughs when we attempt to use our sparse Amharic, but I think they appreciate the effort. We definitely stick out like five very white sore thumbs ("ferenge" is the Amharic term for "white person," but apparently it's not insulting, just a nickname of sorts...we say "Ethiopian" (another word I can't remember in Amharic) in return...laughs all around). This is a different country for sure, but we're loving it thus far.
There's a ton more I could say, but I'll leave that for another time. As a note, don't reply to this email address, we can only send emails from the guest house, we'll be able to check our own email accounts when we get time to go to an internet cafe, hopefully in a few days. Well, I'm off to go read for a while and then we're going to play Phase 10 (best card game ever!) and hang out until our early bedtime of 10 pm. I hope you are all doing well in Washington, you are all in our thoughts and prayers daily!
ps- a few ------ requests- we're flying to ------- on Friday, so safety for that journey; ---- for the missionaries here in Addis and Ethiopia in general, they've been so welcoming to us!; I have a head cold, and the rest have been feeling a little off lately, so ---- for health; continued ------- for the city of Addis and for peace to reign here.