As usual, Amber was paranoid about the water and getting sick and she continued to place tape on her mouth for her shower where as I never did once. Who ended up getting sick for half a day? It wasn't me. :-) Anyhow, I joked that I was going to take a picture and finally just did it. For future mouth tapers, the masking tape doesn't work too well.
We woke up and were both actually excited and nervous at the same time, as we had scheduled Solomon to take us out one more time in the city. With this particular trip, we had a specific place we wanted to visit but none of us knew where it was.
Back in the US, when we received our referral, we were able to see Seble's police report and all the supporting documents that Hannah's Hope had. I did some research on-line and found a website that pin-pointed the location of the church Seble was found at. I studied the map and the whole city to make sure I was in the right area and that it was the right church. With the city, police name, church name, etc. all listed in the report, there was no mistaking that the location was correct. With only the picture of the map in mind and the key words to tell Solomon, we headed out this morning to locate the church.
Earlier this week we went and visited the Fistula Hospital. Ironically enough, the street we need to take was just before the Fistula Hospital and looking on a map, as a crow flies, as it is said, this church was just up and over a few streets and as we would find out later, over the hill. It was exciting that we were actually so close and we didn't realize it but for today, we will be there.
Here are some more city scenes as we traveled to the church. This particular picture shows that the city of Addis does have traffic lights. The funny thing was that none of them were even on and the cars just kept flying by, driving how they like.
This truck was LOADED with bananas.
We are in a four lane street. Two on our side and two going the other direction with a small curbed median. We don't have a clue what this shed looking thing was or what it would be used for sitting in the small median but sure made for an interesting picture.
Another small business tucked inbetween many others. This particular one is where you can purchase rebar for building projects.
We are on the busy road way. Every once in awhile there is an opening between the shops. They are alley like openings that are lined with more of peoples houses (shacks). It's as if the shops are a facade, hiding what is really behind the businesses....the real life in Ethiopia.
Just a look of how BUSY the streets were of cars AND people. It was amazing to see and to actually think and wonder, what or where is each person going. It's as if each person had something to do or go but at the same time the living there is so slow paced and relaxing. Just a weird feeling/thought.
Addis General Hospital. One of many that we saw. Each hospital we saw was NOT that big for having to serve this huge population.
This is the cities bus depot. This is where the people will get on the bus to travel to a village outside of the city. In front of the bus depot were many people sleeping next to the curb. There were many of them and all next to each other. Other thing you'll notice is they are all covered up. Again, this was just one of those weird sites and made you hope they were okay and just sleeping.
Parked along the road, we already passed about 2 or 3 before taking this photo but these were log trucks. They were hauling logs in the back of their flat bed truck with fence walls.
This was just a street market of many things. You can see the shoe shiner, in the back you can see a furniture store, and also you can see the sign for the JJ Bakery.
Just another "alley" shot of more housing.
With all the vehicles in Ethiopia, they have to have a tire store. This must be the future Les Schwab's store. (Les Schwab's is a tire shop heavily located in the Pacific NW that started in Oregon)
Now we were getting close to our first cut-off road that was going to lead us to the church. Looking at this photo, the street we are suppose to take a right hand turn on is right at the base of the big blue sign. Solomon missed it as we weren't too positive on the turn because the road was pretty narrow. He pulled over at the gas station which was one block up and located just about under the small white sign. We verified that, that was the road to Keranyo. The fun part came next. This road was more of a one way and because of the off ramp to the left, there was no turn around for about a mile down which then we would have to come back up and try it again. But Solomon was awesome. He just put it in reverse and we backed up against the one way traffic until we could make the turn on the road we passed. It was freaky and funny at the same time but he did great. We made the turn and continued with our search.
Here we see a horse stampede. They were on a jog and no one else around. Usually you see goats or bulls roaming but here looked to be some horses. The guy up against the fence probably wishes he should have stopped somewhere else to finish his "business".
This was the first "Y" in the road we were suppose to take. Apparently we are following the signs to LELA, where ever or whatever that is.
This was just after taking our 2nd "Y". You can definately feel that you were leaving the main hussle of traffic and kind of getting closer to the country. The roads were much more worse and filled with more pot holes which is why you'll see so many more of these three wheeled vehicles. Solomon said that they are much more easier to manuever on these types of streets than the taxi's so the people will use them instead and boy did they cram them full. They look like they will fit 2-3 people fine but they had 5-6 crammed inside with a load on top of the roof.
After we clear the housing, we break into an opening. You can see we have to cross a small valley and back up the other side. At the bottom, they were building a much larger and wider bridge for this road which seemed weird because the road we just got off of sure was not wide enough to handle the traffic this new bridge will be able to handle.
We ended up following this road until we came to the end of pavement, about 1/2 mile up the other side. I felt we were right there but could not see a church. There were two police officers on the sidewalk right at the end of the street. Solomon asked them where Sefer Genet Gabrial Church was and it didn't seem like they knew. They pointed up the road and so we kept going. I knew it was a smaller church and that there was a larger church nearby too so we changed our plan. Lets first find this bigger church to make sure we are in the right area and then back calculate to the little church. We moved forward going through what seemed to be a tiny village with LOTS of people. Knowing that Solomon wasn't too sure where the church was, the big crowd was kind of intimidating. We got to the other side and found ourselve in a major construction site but was still open for traffic. Below you can see a neighboring village to the project trying to dry out their clothes. It was a significate drop off.
This picture shows the beautiful hillside and landscape of the area, at the same time, shows a cemetary where most of the plots are covered with roofs and fenced in. This was where we first saw those two police officers. Now looking back on our trip, all the officers had to do was turn around and piont because the church was just behind them. This cemetary was an extension one of the church itself. We were that close and didn't know it.
The trail led right to the church. It was layed out exactly as the satalite map on-line I found showed me back in the US. It was weird to now actually be there. The church was more of a funneral service prayer type of church but we aren't forsure. It was definately tiny though. We looked around for a bit and then started looking at the fence line as that is where Seble was found.
Shot of the church outside the second, larger gate. We felt that this is where someone would have left her but was still unsure.
This road was heavily traveled probably by ones that lived in this neighborhood but then again it was a cemetary and the larger cemetary was just up the hill and so everyone walked this road to get to it. Another reason Seble was found. You can see Solomon's car parked up by the other gate.
Seemed to be the main enterance into the church.
At the end of the road and down the hill further, you can see a suspension bridge that apparently a lot of people use to get from the one hillside to this hillside. This is at the end of the church property.
On our way out, the same way we came in, we passed the Kolfe Keranyo Sub City Administrations Office. Just hearing the words made us feel that we were collecting all the history we could for Seble when she gets older. This is as far back as we can go. It made us happy that we could find it and get pictures and all. Amber was even able to snap a picture of the Kolfe Keranyo Sub City Police Station as we drove by one day. The next day we were told not to take pictures at these certain places and police stations were one of them. Opps but o'well. We now have the picture to fulfill her records. We'll place that picture in the video when we can find it.
Now we were on our way back to the shopping area. We heard that Wass was going to be there with another family so if we made it, we could ride back with him and if not, we would have Solomon drive us back to the hotel.
The Home Depot in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia? Wow!! (not sure it's the same Home Depot we are use to but great to see familiar names)
This is the famous Lion of Judah statue.
This is the oldest hotel in Ethiopia. It actually looked in very good shape. It's called the Ethiopian Hotel. We had to keep our camera faced in their direction because right across the street from them is some Federal Security building which is a definate no-no on taking pictures of it.
We finally made it to the shopping area and Wass was still there. We said bye to Solomon for the last time this trip and told him we'll see him in a month.
Just before we left, this mom and son came up to the window. We gave them lots of snacks. Then we asked if we could take their picture. She said yes and they smiled. They took such a good picture. It was cute!
Passing the government housing apartments. There were always tons of blue taxi vans out front.
We finally made it back to Hannah's Hope. This was our last and final visit and when we had to say goodbye to Seble until our second trip.
It was time to say goodbye. We held Seble and all gave her kisses and hugs. Said bye to Sara and then handed Seble to Sara. They sat on the ground and started playing with her toys. They both looked up and waved bye as we were walking out the babies room door.
On our way back, I had to stop and purchase avacodos from one of the stands. They are my favorite and I wanted to see what they were like in Africa. Taking the practices from the US about picking avacodos, too firm means harder eating, too soft means they are rotting. And with that in mind, I picked a middle one. Apparently I should have picked a softer one because it was so hard and NOT ripe to eat at all. The second one I decided not to eat but save it and let it rippen. This particular one wouldn't rippen before we had to leave tonight so it made it all the way back to the US. It ended up being so soft I thought it was rotten. When I opened it to eat it, it was the best one yet. So, for future avacodo buyers in Africa, when selecting your avacodo, choose the soft ones.
This is the lady that is pregnant and was kicked out of her village by her husband. She's staying out next to the guards shack next to our hotel. You can see she is finally drinking water because she had one empty container behind her and a full one between her legs.
This photo would be looking in the direction of where Hannah's Hope would be located. The road we traveled on to get there traveled on the back side of the red building located in the middle of the photo. Then it went on the backside of the larger building in the middle of the photo on the left and sort of rounded around the base of the mountain hill side. There was a turn about that you go around which basically takes you around allowing a left turn. At the very top of the hill there is a church. You can see it's roof at the very top. Hannah's Hope, as a crow flies, is located just over the hill just to the right of the church. Our hotel was NOT that far away at all. We were there in probably less than 5 minutes.
Right over the ridge of buildings should be the Bole International Airport. Airplanes constantly flew over Hannah's Hope (very high but viewable) as they were approaching to land at the airport.
This is a picture of their light switches at the hotel. Just fatter toggle switches compared to the US.
Here is a picture of their style of outlets. They are round and recessed. The front desk was able to give us a converter that we pushed into their outlet and then on the other end was a normal US style outlet. Depending on what you are bringing to charge (a laptop, video camera, camera battery, etc..) it was very nice to bring a surge protector with you. You can then plug the surge protector into the ONE outlet and now you have multiple outlets. At the same time, you have a surge protector for when the hotels power goes out so you don't damage any of your equipment. Just a suggestion.
Just a shot of the hallway of our hotel. It was a very nice hotel as you can tell by some of its decorative molding. It was a very nice hotel.
Here is our hotel room door. Room 407 - the famous NO shower curtain and sewer drain smelling bathroom but big and nice. Even had a leather couch and two leather chairs. The table was missing due to the previous couple that stayed in the room. As explained by the hotel manager, they were newly weds and were taking pictures on the table and broke the table. We laughed and left it at that.
Melissa Rapp and Amber a few hours before we were to leave to the airport.
All our luggage in the back of the Riviera Hotels van, packed and heading to the airport.
Jacob got all teary eyed that we had to leave.
Unloading our luggage just outside the Bole International Airport. They had a security booth just outside the sidewalk to go up to the airport. They had to check your passport before going through up to the airport itself. Once you walked into the airport, the first thing you walk through was a security exray for your bags and then ourselves. It seemed pretty secured. Our one bag was even pulled because of Ambers silver cross we got. It showed up weird on the exray machine and they wanted to verify.
Once we got through the initial exray portion to get into the airport, we made our way up to the counter to where they weighed and we dropped off our checked in luggage, and they gave us our boarding tickets. We then moved on to the customs portion where we had to fill out more paperwork regarding leaving Ethiopia. After getting through customs, we then had to find our gate. Once we found our gate, we waited until it was time to get ready for boarding our flight. They have everyone that is going to be on the flight show their boarding tickets which then they place a colored sticker on it and we then get to go through one more exray machine. Unfortunately, this was the only airport I was searched because of the zippered pockets on my pants. It kept setting off the machine. It seemed to be more sensative compared to the other airports we went through. At least it was catching it though.
Here's Amber holding her boarding ticket with a blue sticker.
Ethiopian Airlines as a process of how to load their planes. Not sure how they decide who gets what color but when we got our boarding passes, they placed a colored sticker on it. This was going to be use for this moment we were at right now, which is actually getting ready to board the plane.