On October 21,we stayed in that morning with Solomon getting to know him better. He loved playing with some nesting cups-banging them together and any stray water bottles he could find. He got around by army crawling. He was pretty easy and didn't cry too much, only woke up once that first night.
Later that afternoon we went to lunch at Family Restaurant (this place had everything from italian, mexican, american, etc. -it was ok) and then took a Gladney led tour of the Holy Trinity Church with Travis (in country staff member, unfortunately Belay was leaving for the US the next day for a month). It was interesting to learn more about the Ethiopian Orthodox religion and learning more about Belay's history. The church was beautiful.
While on the tour Solomon had an amazing babysitter (provided by our agency) who was with us the entire time we were in Ethiopia whenever we needed her. She watched both Solomon and John and actually brought both boys (at different times) from Awassa to the Gladney care center in Addis.
October 22, we went to eat lunch at Blue Tops (very good...good ice cream) and then headed out for a tour of 3 government orphanges in Addis. The first one was the boys orphange - Kolfe. We watched them play soccer and then went on a tour of their facility. The younger boys enjoyed having their pictures taken.
We then went to the baby orphange -Kebebe Tsehai Government Orphanage. The day before we had arrived new workers had started all because of Janet Belleme . It was an overwhelming experience and one I will not forget.
We then toured another government orphanage-Kechene. The children there love to hold your hand, have their picture taken, have you play with them and follow you around everywhere. The older girls performed our first coffee ceremony. And there was lots of dancing--even from Belay and driver Solomon.
It is hard to describe what we saw this day, but after visiting these 3 government orphanages and seeing ALL that Gladney has done for them I had such huge pride in our agency and was so glad that we decided to go with them. I was also ready to get back to the guesthouse to see Solomon! He was so excited to see us it made our day.
October 23-we stayed in all day.