It’s usually around the holidays that I start to get home sick for my family and friends and this year, since spending thanksgiving with our families in the states was just not going to happen, Ileah and I wanted to spend it with the people in kalalaa who in many ways have become our family too. We planned for a Thanksgiving lunch, pot luck style and brought chickpea patties, lentil soup, and pumpkin soup (our most thanksgiving food). Tsigue (the compound cook) made lots of Ethiopian food for our lunch. We invited many people to our pot luck lunch however many couldn’t come. As I stood in front of the table full of food and as it got closer and closer to noon, I began to worry that there wouldn’t be enough people to eat it all. So I went around the compound inviting whoever I saw to our lunch (the school librarian, clinic nurse, teachers, hired help, etc.) Nurse Aduenya came with two other ladies and she also contributed to the already enormous amount of food by bring more food which was great and we all did Thanksgiving justice by gorging ourselves with food. People arrived in shifts, when one group was finished, another would arrive and it was like this until 3pm when it was time for us to leave and teach class.
Since Thanksgiving is not a holiday celebrated in Ethiopia, Ileah and I had to explain to everyone what it was all about. I began to think of all the many blessings I was thankful for like: being able to come to Ethiopia and serve the needs of the people, the friendship people here have shown me, the support from my friends and family back home, and above all a God who loves me and takes care of my every need. This was a very special Thanksgiving that I’ll not forget.