Saturday, January 7, 2017

Off to Ethiopia

So today Elder Phelps and I attended our Mission Correlation Meeting this morning with our Branch Missionaries and then headed off to Kampala.  Well, Entebbe to be exact.  Entebbe is located to the Southwest of Kampala and is where the International Airport is located.  We are staying in Entebbe for the night and then after a short time at church tomorrow morning we are boarding a plane and flying to Addis Ababa (Ethiopia).

About 6 weeks ago President Collings mentioned to Rick that he and Sister Collings were planning a visit to Ethiopia to visit some indigenous tribes.  At the end of the conversation President Collings invited Rick (and I) to come along.  We had been planning to take some time for our anniversary in January to maybe travel to Rwanda to do some gorilla tracking.  When Elder Phelps got wind of this trip to Ethiopia and received an official invite from President Collings, there was no stopping him!  He has been wanting to somehow get to Ethiopia while we are here and this was his chance.  Call it a bucket list thing.  As we talked about it,  I let him know my concerns and really how indigenous tribes are not my thing,  but I knew how much he wanted to go and so I agreed!  And here we are.
(I'm still hoping to see some gorillas before we leave in April:)

We will be visiting tribes in the Rift Valley in the Southwest part of Ethiopia.  We will fly into Arba Minch on Monday and travel by car throughout Friday seeing the different tribes.  A few of them are:  the Dorzi, the Hammer, the Tsmey, and the Mursi.  Not only will we be seeing the tribal people but we should see a few large game as well...hippos and crocodiles.  (and I'm really hoping to see zebra!)  We will be traveling with President and Sister Collings, the Harlines (our Ethiopian missionary couple) and another couple that serve in Kenya whom we have never met.  It should be a very interesting week! We will arrive back in Entebbe late Saturday night.

As for tonight we are in the beautiful Protea Hotel.  It is a Marriott property and we were able to use Marriott Reward Points for our stay.  Those points sure came in handy!  Protea sits on Lake Victoria (the second largest fresh water lake in the world) and we have a beautiful view off of our huge balcony.  
The staff upgraded us to a suite and it is so spacious and luxurious!  

This is our view off of our balcony.

A nice big bed with a sitting area.

                                          and a view to the lake.

Something special about this place is the BATHTUB!!  I haven't taken a hot bath for three months so this is awesome!  I am loving the fact that in the morning I won't have to shave my legs standing up.  Oh, the important things in life:)  Another wonderful fact is that we have AIR CONDITIONING!  Such a treat for us:)

We found out when we arrived that the pool had just closed.  (What?  It's only 6:00 people!!)  After twisting the pool man's arm (not literally:) he decided to let us swim for 20 minutes.  We made a quick change and jumped into the pool.  It was fun and we made a memory!

Our room is stocked with some fun snacks.  Two different types of chips, I think one is a type of banana and I'm not sure what the other one is.  Also bananas, peanuts, and a passion drink.

We also ordered some room times!!
spring rolls, green salad, samosas, and potato wedges

So tomorrow we are off.  According to Sister Collings,   Ethiopia is a completely different ballgame than Uganda.  Not completely sure what we are headed for and we won't have much internet from what I can tell so keep us in your prayers!  Be back soon!!

1 comment:

  1. Ethiopia?? What in the world ever got into that brother of mine to want to someday go to Ethiopia??!!
    I'm delighted to see that you guys are being pampered by getting to spend time in that Marriott--and it is indeed very lovely!! The most we've ever spent on a Marriott is 35,000 points, and though ours was elaborate--this one of yours is much MORE elaborate! I'm delighted you were able to stay there--and to finally be able to take a BATH!!
    But I will certainly be eager to see your next posts--telling us that you are BACK and SAFE!! Our prayers will certainly be with you!!! (...and don't get too close to the crocodiles!! :) Love, Karen