I, Becca, had a great, fun and adventurous weekend.  It all started at 1:50am Saturday morning…well, actually it all started a week before.  We were having a girls night at my house, while the guys were at a surgical meeting in Addis.  Of course, in a typical girls night fashion, we had a great meal together, played random music that every so often made you want to get up and dance, and we did a LOT of talking.  It is fun to just talk and get to know girls that you really have only known for a year or 2 and hear all about their pasts and time leading up to Ethiopia.  Well, one of the things we talked about was some of the most romantic things that have been done for us or that we have done for our guys.  Several of us could only think of things we had done over 5 years ago, including myself, so then we got depressed, thinking we should do fun sporadic things more often even in our marriages.  Now don’t get me wrong, I recognize all of the little things and how those add up, the daily things matter.  I even just read this article “Is generosity better than sex?”  The article was really good and talked about the importance of serving each other every day, so me getting the coffee pot ready every night for Paul’s early mornings do matter.  But it was fun to think of something more fun and bigger to do for him. That is when I came up with this plan…

It all started at 1:50am Saturday morning, is that even called morning? I got a phone call from Stephanie all she said was, “Mommy, said he will be here in 20 minutes.”  Okay, I better get dressed and ready.  Wait, what? Who’s mommy?  Why is she a he?  Mommy is one of the local guys who drives to Addis every morning.  He leaves between 2am and 3 am every day to drive to Addis in the dark before all of the people and donkeys and cows wake up to get on the road.  I had planned out a trip to go to Addis and surprise Paul at the airport on his way back from Zambia.  Some of our friends from Soddo, were going to stay at our house with the kids.  They have one 5 year old girl, so the kids were excited for a sleep over.  And Nathan and Lydie knew that I was going to Addis to get daddy, so everyone was excited and ready for the surprise plan!

So, Steph and I get in the van, thankfully they let us sit in the front with the driver, because there 18 other people in the back of something like the size of your mini vans.  I admit, I was a little freaked out about a dark drive on African roads.  And since, I told multiple people to pray for me, I got a total of 3 calls the next day confirming that I was alive.  Mommy played a fun mix of English and Amharic songs while switching his gum every so often.  The guy behind him sang along to all the songs, including some random version of a Michael Jackson song.  At one point he yelled out, “play Shikira, Shikira, Shikira”  The driver only answered back with, “Beyonce is better”.  The moon was full that night, so the whole country side was lit up.  The drying wheat on the mountain sides reflected the moon light resembling snow. And we saw several packs of hyenas crossing the road as we came upon them.

We arrived at Addis at 6:30 am and headed to none other than the Sheraton for a day of laying by the pool, since Paul didn’t fly in until 8pm.  We asked the Sheraton conceriege what time the pool opened. He said, “Pool???”  Wondering why in the world we would want to go to the pool at this time of day when it is still 60 degrees outside, but we knew the sun would come out. We had an amazing breakfast there and then laid out by the pool from 10am until 3pm.  What a relaxing day.  I saw some of my friends and found out she had come to Addis to surprise her husband as he came in from Uganda…how funny that we had the same idea.

After I got to the airport, I only waited about 30 min when I saw Paul waiting for his bag.  I had to wait on the other side of these huge glass windows, so I texted him.  I said, “You look really handsome right now in that blue striped polo.”  I saw him from a distance messing with his phone and as soon as put in his Ethiopian SIM card a message popped up.  He thought, “How old is this message, when did she send me this?…Wait a second, I am wearing a blue polo right now!”  And then he looked through the windows and saw me.  He was very surprised and excited that we could spend some time together before heading back to work and home.  We had a great ride home together, where we brainstormed about what is happening and what is to come…you know, we basically solved the problems of the world, together.

So that was my really, fun surprise.  It was an adventure for sure. And I would do it again for him any day.

Us in the car heading back to Soddo. It looks a lot like a picture we took 8 years ago, when I surprised him and met him in New Mexico, so he didn't have to drive back by himself....wait here it is...we don't look a day older. right?

Here is a link to the blog about how we first met and when this pic was taken.  It’s a good story.