"How can there be too many children? It's like saying there are too many flowers." Mother Theresa

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Day 8, Feel like someone punched me in the gut

We woke up that morning, quickly dressed and went to get Iella. We skipped showering etc, until we get back the guest house, for obvious reasons. Ryan has mosquitos bites on his forehead as big as silver dollars. I pray we don’t contract malaria as I scratch the bites on my legs. We go to the patio and wait for Iella. We think we will order a macchiato and but no one comes to take our order. Iella comes out and we get in the car and drive a little ways to the main strip. We get out and go in to get our macchiato. There are no ladies here, just men. I think I’m missing something. We take a table. I am causing quite a stir and wonder if we should leave. The waiter comes over and tells us they have no macchiato. We go to two more places in search of the blessed liquid. We find a Kenyan place in a fairly large building and we climb the steps. They have macchiato. I have two. Iella laughs at me. While I’m drinking it there is a program on the tv about morbidly obese Americans….hmmm maybe I shouldn’t use sugar in my drink. I get up to go to the bathroom and find what you find in most public Ethiopian bathrooms…..filth. The ladies has no seat and it is literally black with filth all over it. The smell makes me gag and I decide to hold it until it comes out my ears before I’ll go in there, squatting is not even an option. I hold back the urge to vomit my macchiato up and go to get the men so we can run some errands for Biruk before picking up the kids.
We arrive at the shanty and everyone comes to give us hugs and kisses. Derara looks a little haggard. He slept on the floor fully clothed. The other kids look fine, as this is how they have lived until two months ago. We are served breakfast, pasta with vegetables and it is delicious. Then we are served coffee. My bladder is already full, but I can’t offend the cook. After visiting with the everyone, we say our goodbyes. This is it. We are leaving Biruk. I feel like someone punched me in the gut. I climb in the car and can’t stop crying. Ryan is sobbing. Guta is wiping his eyes. Selamawit and Derara just sit there. Maybe they have no tears left. We are leaving their biological family. They feel like our family now. I wasn’t expecting this ammount of pain at this goodbye. We cuddle in the backseat. I put one earbud in and turn on Shane and Shane, I give the other to Derara so he can listen too. My face is in the window, the sun on my skin and the wind hitting me, the tears begin to dry. We drive two hours back to Addis, forever a little different…….I still need to pee.

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