Posted by Kate Montgomery at 9:37 pm  Ethiopia
Oct 142010

Well it’s been AGES since I’ve written, so bad I know.  I just get so frustrated with sitting at a computer here.  Not sure why, I do this 40 hours a week back home, I should be use to it.

ANYWAY!  I’m doing really well!  Rainy season is over, I have sussed the bed bug problem, I’m sleeping better as I’m not itching like a maniac all night, I have a flushing toilet and shower, my stomach is better ……… well, better than it was, and my flu is gone.  ALL the crap that was horrible for the first few weeks is all good now and Addis has definitely grown on me.  There are SO many new buildings going up, it’s uncomprehendable.  I would love to come back in 10 years or so and see the difference, it will be huge.  There are also new volunteers and they are all great.  We all get along so well which makes the whole experience a lot better.

The kids are wonderful, some of them are SO smart.  Some are naughty too but they are still cute.  We love them and they love us.  When they see us it’s all big smiles and big hugs and kisses and they are all willing to learn.  We have done the ABC’s, 1-20, my body (head shoulders etc), shapes, days of the week, and now they are learning addition and how to say “hello my name is …. and my favourite colour is ….    The head, shoulders things is so funny.  They have mastered the stomach, but they say, really loudly, STO MUCK!  And so we point to things (which aren’t the stomach) and they say ” Eyes, Ears, STO MUCK.  I say “no, that’s not your stomach, that’s your mouth, and they say “Mouth, STO MUCK!”  SO cute and funny.  They like that word a lot.

We have a lot of fun with them but it can also be very tiring.  We have to keep remembering that they are only children and this is their first time in a classroom away from their families for a whole year, so patience with them is a must.  They are learning English 3 times a week and Amharic 2 times so their wee brains get a load of learning in a week.  They pick it up SO fast though, it’s great.

On the weekends we have been heading away sometimes to see some lakes and things.  The countryside is beautiful and I do enjoy getting out of Addis for a couple of days.  I have got into some sticky situations though, it’s hard not to here.  Like on one trip by stomach was ………….. well …………. “not rosey” in the morning.  We had a 5 hour bus trip to the lake and I was REALLY hesitant about going because the achy tummy comes on REAL quick. Anyway, I was fine on that trip but on the way back we stopped and needed to go.  SO …………….. there was only one toilet to choose from and, well, here I was, back pack pushed up against the door that wouldn’t shut with bugs and filth all over the place, trying to squat on those “shit on seat” toilets, while trying to hold my jeans as high as poss so they wouldn’t touch any surface, while my tummy was, well, doing it’s own thing.  Plus it was hot as hell and I was sweating like a pig and I had a load of Ethiopians waiting a metre away to use the filth pit loo after me.  OH!  AND!  There was no toilet paper.  I had some in my BAG of course but that was being pushed against the door to keep it off the floor and keep the door shut.  Hmmmmmmmmmmm, I was thinking …………… “You really came up trumps here Kate!  Nice one idiot!!”  It reminded me of a bad (but funny now) experience I had in India.  It was horrible at the time but a funny memory now.  Actually most times, when things have gone wrong for us, they are the best stories and best memories so I’ve learnt to just take it in my stride.

Things tend to go wrong here quite a bit.  Like the pub last night ran out of beer!  Yes the pub ran out of beer ……….. so ……….. we went to the other pub and the POWER WENT OUT, and didn’t come back on.  So ……….. we got a mini van home ………. and the van RAN OUT OF PETROL.  HA!  HA HA!   TOOOO FUNNY.

Ummmmm, well I think that’s it from me.  OH, my red cross parcel arrived, much thanks to mama and Nije and the rest of my beautiful family for sorting that for me.  It was VERY MUCH NEEDED!  And the clothes!  Well ………. they went down a treat, and were desperately needed also.  The kids look great as the clothes aren’t old at all and are in great condition.

OK, I hope you are all well and healthy and happy.  Until next time, much love from me xoxoxoxo


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