Started the day with an "egg sandwich" for breakfast and of course, an amazing macchiato. After breakfast, we went to church for a medical clinic. The church had organized the whole thing and was offering it to the community for free. There were so many people, and by the end of the day we discovered the doctors had been able to see 200 people.
Front of the line.
While people were waiting, we tried to talk to some of them and did a yarn bracelet craft. We started out showing it to the children, but women and even men were quickly interested.
I met a girl named Tegis who was waiting with her grandmother. She was 11 years old and spoke a tiny, tiny bit of English, but we managed to communicate a few things. She was such a beautiful, sweet girl. As we were talking, she gently pulled me out of the sun into the shade, made me take her place on a bench and stood at my side with her hand resting on my shoulder as she talked to me, periodically stroking my hair or my arm.
Tegis & her grandmother
Ethiopian culture is very intimate - there is no sense of "personal space". Men will hold hands while they walk with a friend, or even just rest their arms on one another while they talk. I'm sort of a "huggy" person, so I really loved this, but I could imagine it might be a struggle for an American man to get used to!
We took a quick break for lunch and continued doing the same thing throughout the afternoon, only playing sports instead of doing crafts.
As the medical clinic was underway and we were entertaining children and teenagers, contractors were busy continuing the construction of the children's home (infrastructure seen in above picture).
I met two little girls named Jitu and Fayva who spoke excellent English. I talked with them pretty extensively. A few of their school teachers came over and began trying to teach me and Sara the Amharic alphabet.
The med clinic closed down, and a few kids straggled to continue playing "football".
That evening we took Pastor and his wife out to dinner. I ordered "Woliso Chicken" - amazing. It was sort of like fried chicken with gravy, but then again, not really. We returned home, did a quick debrief & then turned in for the night.