Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Ethiopia Post #4

Okay. We are up to Tuesday of our Ethiopian adventure.

Tuesday was the designated shopping day. Maeve went back to Hannah's Hope to visit her friends and special mom's while Stacy and I went to buy gifts for her. She seemed detached a little, but true to form, did not complain. It was such a confusing week for all the kids. I kissed her goodbye and got in the van with the others and headed out for the morning.

It was a sprint, not a marathon. I had been warned of this in advance, so it didn't shock me when we were told that we had to be back at the van in an hour and a half. Stacy and I, paired together, were a pretty professional team! And when I say professional, I do not mean that we were any good at bartering. But, in my mind, the items were very cheap in North American terms, I had allocated the money, and the merchants could certainly use it. They all loved us though! I had decided, in advance, some items that I really wanted to get Maeve, so it was helpful to have that in mind while racing from store to store. I wasn't as organized as some with getting a gift for every birthday/graduation/wedding etc... but, I did buy some key items that I think she'll enjoy. It was also great because friends of mine brought their little girl, Blin, home from Ethiopia this summer, but they were too sick to participate in their shopping day, therefore I mostly just bought 2 of everything so Blin could have her gifts too.

After we piled back into the van, laughing about how we didn't really even remember all that we purchased, we headed to a local Italian restaurant for lunch. Although the food was decent, it was the artwork that was amazing. Again, thanks to those who had traveled before me, I was prepared with my visa card and ready to make an art purchase. The paintings were not really cheap, especially for Ethiopia, but I think its priceless to have a painting from Ethiopia hanging on my wall. They took the painting off the wooden frame, rolled up the canvas, and put it in a sturdy tube that was travel-ready.

When we got back to Hannah's Hope in the early afternoon, all the kids had been bathed and were in various sleepers already. To my panic, they took the cornrows out of Maeve's hair... oh no... any chance of a decent hairstyle for my girl had just been taken away. ha.

The rest of the day was rather event free. We headed back to the hotel and spent time playing and loving on Maeve and getting to know her better...

Hanging out at Hannah's Hope just before we left on our shopping trip

The market we were taken to shop... it was approximately 1 1/2 blocks of shops

Having lunch at the Italian Restaurant. Repeat photo -- but this is the painting that I purchased. There were many more that I wished I had the money and wall space for.

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