So my APU colleague/friend, Yuriko, who is in Addis for a few days, offered to cut my hair. She often cut others' hair, so I figured it couldn't be too big a risk... But we had to find scissors. That has been quite a feat! The hotel where they're staying (and where I'm visiting Yuriko, Mary and Sue for the weekend) don't have scissors. The front desk sent me to concierge, who sent me to the manager's office, who said "Sorry, we never use scissors." I finally found a pair at the Internet cafe, and she's letting me borrow them for the evening. I'll upload a picture of the process when I can get my computer hooked up to the Internet again. Actually, as I'm sitting here, my hair is HALF done. We had first borrowed a pair from another shop, but after half of my hair was cut, we called it quits since the scissors were blunt.
Yip. Imagine me with the left side of my hair long, the right side short. I don't think the Ethiopians are thinking it's particularly strange, since many of the tourists here are rather unique. They probably see more weird things than people with odd haircuts. (After I had written this update, I did manage to find another pair of scissors and Yuriko was able to finish the job. One would never think my hair was cut by anyone but a pro!)
This is it for now. I will be leaving for Debre Zeit (where my classes are held) early in the morning and will most likely not be able to connect to the Internet for the rest of the week. I might try to come to the city on Thursday since it's a national holiday, but it's not certain yet.
It's been an ABSOLUTE blessing to see some friends and to laugh at the silliest things. We have really had an amazing time, not only being goofy, but also being able to observe this culture and pray for this nation.
It is exciting to know that we are here on a program that is impacting the leaders of this nation. More than 300 government officials and other leaders are currently enrolled in APU's Master's Degree that we're offering here.
I keep thinking of random facts I want to share with you:
- Ethiopia has no ATMs. This is challenging since I'm no longer used to carrying cash when I travel! (Praise God I brought my US check book with me in order to reimburse my friends for some things they brought for me. I could thus give them a check and get some cash!)
- Ethiopia has only one university (though it has campuses in a few cities): The University of Addis Ababa. And this university has only one female professor.
- Of the 300-some students in our program, there are fewer than 10 in the entire program. We're encouraging more to enroll.
- Arranged marriages and marriage by abduction still happens in this country. Girls as young as 6 or 7 years old can be abducted, after which the abductors send a message to the family to make wedding arrangements. It hurts to imagine that!
- Praise God for one week's classes that went smoothly, and for the interaction with students, many of whom are Muslim.
- Praise God for safety amidst the many bizarre experiences I've had in Addis.
- Praise God for time with friends!
- Pray for the ability to truly connect with my students this week.
- Pray for safety in travels.
- Pray for the nation of Ethiopia...
Until I'm able to connect again,