Tuesday, September 18, 2012


Today began with a very relaxing morning. We had no plans and just spent time playing and hanging out with B.  He was definitely a funny man this morning!  He was clapping and dancing and having a great time.  He also took a nap on daddy. Big plus!  We then headed out to lunch with some other AWAA families and Laura and Liya (YAY!).  After lunch we headed up to Entoto mountain with Laura and Liya.  Entoto Mountain is the highest peak overlooking the city of Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia. Mount Entoto is part of the Entoto mountain chain, reaching 3,200 meters above sea level. It is also a historical place where Menelik II resided and built his palace, when he came from Ankober and founded Addis Ababa. Here are a few pictures of the Palace and the mountain.  

The king's palace

Laura, Liya, Josh and I

It was foggy today but it is such a great view of the city!

Now, the more interesting part about the mountain.  The mountain is densely covered by eucalyptus trees which were imported from Australia during the reign of Emperor Menelik II and most of the planting took place during Emperor Haile Sillasie's reign; thus it is sometimes referred to as the "lung of Addis Ababa". The forest on the mountain is an important source of firewood to the city. It was also a source of building material in earlier times.  Women walk up the mountain and carry the  eucaluyptus branches down on their backs.  EVERY DAY. They might get paid 50 cents a day.  Wow, these women have to be exhausted.  It definitely made my every day struggles seem like absolutely NOTHING.  Here are a few pictures.

Not sure how well you can see, but the bundles are huge! Seriously cannot imagine walking down an entire mountain with that on my back EVERY day!

After driving down the mountain we went to Entot Beth Artisans.  This is an Ethiopian social business that is dedicated to restoring HIV/AIDS affected community on Mr. Entoto by providing fair-wage employment.  The women artisans create hand-crafted jewelry from local recycled materials. Several examples of the recycled materials are cocoa beans and bullet shells. We saw all of the women in one small room making the jewelry.  The jewelry was beautiful! We were grateful to have Laura with us who helped us locate Entito Artisans!

After this, we stopped at Kaldi's for some coffee (OF COURSE) and then drove back to our guest house.  B ate his first meal of Mac N Cheese for dinner (I know real healthy right?).  Other than his bottles he wants NOTHING to do with baby food and wants all people food. We are definitely ok with this!  He still only has 2 teeth but he loves to chomp away at pasta, bread, rice...well pretty much everything. This should make for some interesting diapers right?  YIKES!!  So thankful God blessed us with the opportunity to visit these great places today.  B is starting to feel SO much better and is talking and laughing and playing like crazy.  I have a feeling he is going to be quite the class clown! 

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