Friday, March 9, 2012

Ethiopia Trip One: Traveling to ET!

The week leading up to our trip seemed to drag by! I had been packing for our trip for a few weeks, so there were just a few last minute errands to run. Thursday, we woke up excited and nervous about the trip ahead!

2 Suitcases (filled with donations), 2 Tubs (filled with donations), 2 carry on suitcases and 2 backpacks!

Our pastor and his wife picked us up and drove us to the airport. I had butterflies in my stomach and fought tears the entire drive to the airport. It was so surreal- we were finally having our "meetya day" trip! I have seen so many gotcha day videos and imagined what it would be like to head to Ethiopia- and now WE were the ones traveling!

We had NO problems checking our two totes and suitcases, which was a great relief! I was so thankful that all of our donations would make it to Ethiopia.

We had a great first flight to Frankfurt (9ish hours) and we both slept a little. The layover was very brief, and soon we were en route to Ethiopia! The second flight seemed very long but we managed to stay awake in an attempt to get on Ethiopian time and be able to sleep when we got to our hotel.

The Ethiopian airport was very chaotic when we landed. We had been given advice to RUN to the Visa line, because it was very slow- and that was true :). After making it through that hurdle, we had to find our luggage. We'd been advised to get a free cart (which we needed to transport all of our luggage) but all of them had been snagged by people who wanted you to use their services to transport your luggage for you. We wanted to avoid this to save money but eventually we had to just pay someone to use their cart. We were a little confused on tipping and the airport was a bit crazy! I guess we will be more prepared for next time.


The hotel driver was waiting with a sign that read our name and soon we were headed to the Riviera Hotel where we would be staying for the next few days.

When we checked in around midnight, we found that our friends the Bishops had left us two waterbottles for us (thanks Angie!) and we headed up to our hotel room. Our itinerary told us that we would be leaving for Hannah's Hope at 9:30 am, so we were determined to get some sleep.

Unfortunately, sleep was not to be had for us. We were too nervous and excited to sleep! All I could think about was where our little man would be when we met him, how he would react, would we get to stay longer than what the itinerary said, etc. We watched the hours tick by and finally it was the day we would meet our son!

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