Another week

This last week has been fairly normal, similar to last week. Teaching continues to go well, especially with grade 10. Grade 7 and 8 are beginning to settle down, now that they know that I’m prepared to punish them. Hopefully they continue to give my head peace.

Street ministry this week was much more normal, and though the police were there again, they were there to protect us this time. They sat and listened while we talked with the same guys who we were talking with the previous week. Some of the kids on the street are very young, and its shocking to see them, maybe 10 or 11 years old sleeping on the street. Most of them run away from their families and wind up on the streets of Addis. Marion, the Canadian Bingham teacher who runs the street ministry said that one of the boys that they visit on a regular basis had recently become a Christian, and expressed an interest in returning to his family up country. He had run away because he had stolen 2000birr from his family and was too afraid to go back and face them. So Marion and Dundee got in contact with the mother of this kid, who was delighted and said she would love to have her son back. Dundee apparently knows some people near to where they live so he can oversee the whole situation. Great news!

On Saturday, we took the street kids from the Horizon project out for a day trip. They were extremely excited, though a couple were denied the trip as they had been skipping school. This is fair enough because Bingham pays for these guys books and uniforms so it was a bit ungrateful of the two lads who were skipping. They’ll have learnt their lesson, as they were distraught not to be allowed to go, and stood in tears as the bus left without them. Tough love I guess, they certainly won’t skip school again and the others on the bus will learn not to either! We drove out of Addis for an our or so, initially to the Genisis Farms Project which seeks to teach local Ethiopians farming techniques as well as the gospel. The boys listened intently.

This dog looked cute, but I kept my distance, and was glad I did, as he nipped at Amanda’s hand when she was stroking him and drew blood.


Impressing us with their acrobatics

After the farm, we headed off to the Ethiopian Air Force Officers Club. There is a swimming pool there that is open to the public, and is extremely cheap. It cost 20 birr (£1) for an adult and 8 birr for the kids, for the whole day (in comparison, the much smaller pool at the Sheraton in Addis costs about 150 birr). The pool itself is Olympic sized, 50m, with 4 or 5 diving boards, some of them very high. Best of all, it was completely empty. Swimming obviously isn’t a traditional Ethiopian activity. Brian was slightly anxious, having heard a story about a club who took some ethiopians swimming, and asked if they could swim. One guy swore he could, jumped in and didn’t come out. Determined to avoid a similar situation, Brian decided to make them all go in the shallow pool to see if any of them should be allowed in the bigger pool. None of them could really swim at all, and fortunately none of them even wanted to venture into the bigger pool. We went for a swim in the bigger pool, glad not to have to be on the lookout for drowning street kids.


The view on the way home

Today, I went to an Ethiopian wedding, my house worker’s daughter and sister were getting married in a double whammy marriage. There were several people from Bingham going so we all piled into one of the cars and set off. No-one had any idea where the chuch was and had only got vague directions so we knew it would be an adventure. After driving up and down the given street for a while, we started asking some of the locals. This was difficult, as none of us spoke very good Amharic. Also, in Ethiopia it is impolite to say you don’t know when asked for directions. So everyone we spoke to gave us directions, which led us to all sorts of places. Eventually we found the place.

The ceremony was enjoyable, we could tell what was going on, even though we didn’t understand a word of it. The music was quite funny, there was one guy playing an electric keyboard, complete with electronic drum sounds and 80s synthesiser sounds. There was a lot of dancing, singing and clapping. The only downside was that they had about 10 photographers who swarmed about like paparazzi. They were determined to take plenty of footage of the audience which would have been fine, though they had an extremely bright floodlight for each camera which they shined directly at our faces for the duration of the service. It was very irratating and I left with a throbbing headache.

Thats all for this week,

Niall

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4 Responses to “Another week”

  1. Esther Says:

    i am insanely jealous of how blue those skies are. today it is wet, windy and flippin cold. and i’m trying to do a dissertation.
    lots of craic!
    keep up the good work – we miss you but appreciate the updates! prayin for you lots.
    take care xx

  2. Darren Says:

    U dont know how lucky you are to be out there. Good weather, good craic and learn new cultures, all this while we are stuck in Ireland, in work and in school. All I can possibly learn is new techniques of trying to sleep with no body noticing!
    Everyones asking about you. Hope your enjoyin it

  3. Chris H Says:

    Well man, seems like your havin a ball!! Strange question, but are you brown?? I mean, not brown brown, but tanned/tanning?? By the way, this web page is poo compared to the other one. But as you say, you get what you pay for!! NOWT!! Have you been playing the old drums much over there?
    Gimmie a shout soon

    All the best, Chris

  4. Andy G Says:

    Hey Nige,

    Slightly off topic but you’ll appreciate this all the same…

    On the radio recently (from scott mills admittedly) there have been reports of certain crimes becoming more widespread in britain. These have been sinister organised crimes, cruel in nature upon unsuspecting victims. The culprits, have you guessed yet? are, (drum roll please!), “Little old ladies on motorised carts”. This is no joke! There have been reports from all over the country of people leaving old ladies to look after their houses and belongings for a few mins and come back to find they’ve been robbed. Classic! you would think they would have learnt from Lloyd Christmas! Hope that brings a smile to your face!!!

    Read your blog on regular basis, keep up the good work. Glad things are going well and you are making the most of your situation as i know you do!

    Keep the Faith

    Andy

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