Well, by now you probably know we passed court! But what you don't know are the details and a wiseman once said "the best tales are in the details". Actually I just made that up.
I pull myself up after very little sleep. I'm excited and scared about court. And I've got a terrific cold to accompany me. Yay. I'll devour breakfast with a bunch of other house guests. Eggs, bread, and that amazing Ethiopian fresh brew. I let Donnie sleep because I may have kept him up throughout the night hacking. Turnabout's fair play; he used to snore like sawing logs.
Dereje wasn't there and that made me a little nervous. I heard so many good things about him, I really wanted him there. He knew our case and I had some questions. They sent a replacement. Blah. We didn't see eye to eye. He was an inch taller than me.
Court was a bit anticlimactic. We're in a room full of foreigners trying to adopt kids and are being called in in groups according to the orphanage we are adopting from. Ours was near the end. The room was almost cleared by the time we were allowed into the mysterious single grey door. Inside are two desks and three ladies. The one in charge rattles off something in what I assume is Amharic while the other two write furiously. The lady in charge was beautiful in a strong governmental sort of way, like Lady Liberty or Judge Judy (see sarcasm). She was a softer Condoleeza. She asked a few questions of me and the other couple "Have you read up on international adoption?...Do you know a bit about Ethiopian culture?...Will you allow the children to know their heritage?...Is your family supportive of this adoption?...Do you understand that this is final when I sign this paper?" In the end Condi said everything was in order for us and we passed. I guess I expected song and dance, but a graceful nod and smile will suffice.
We are headed back toward the guest house stopping at several locations to try and find some throat lozenges. This is no small task in Ethiopia. I've been told twice now that they are no longer on the market. Two gentlemen in line in front of me at one pharmacy are purchasing OxyContin and Loratabs over the counter. They can buy narcotics but I can't purchase menthol-flavored candy? What gives?
I met with Dereje that afternoon. He is very nice. Explained everything. Answered questions. Completely patient. It was a little weird that he was wearing a scarf when it was over 80 degrees outside but whatever floats your boat.
On our way back to the guest house, yet again, and this time in need of a nap. We slept about an hour and then head to the orphanage to visit the kids for a bit. I'm excited to tell them the good news of our passing court. I'm not sure if they understand the process all that well but certainly my excitement is evident. I spent much of my time in the baby room with Rahel. Donnie played downstairs with lots of kids. I knew I needed to and wanted to go back down and spend time with others but it's hard to get away when one of your kids is enjoying you so. We hung our heads out of the top floor window. She shouts greetings at people she knows (and maybe some she doesn't) down on the street and she pointed out different buildings visible from there. There's quite a lot one can see from the fourth floor of the orphanage.
Alas, it was time I had to go. We went back down a couple of flights and met Solomon on his way up. They brought me into the playroom where Rahel's best friend was watching a movie. We stayed there for a while. Solomon and I went onto the balcony and talked before returning to the bottom to rejoin the others. We played a bit longer and then left. Court and all it entailed ate a good piece of the day.
For dinner we are trying Lime Tree. I'll have the spaghetti with a ginger lime tea. The spaghetti is quite good. Nothing extravagant but good cafe style spaghetti. The ginger lime tea is strong enough to remove paint from the wall. It burns my sore throat in a really good way. We'll come back here tomorrow night, drawn by this tea, yet our experience will not be the same.