23 February 2012

Nighttime Around the World

Serenaded by the undulating highs of lows of {what, a midnight call to worship?} male singing, mixed with the occasional dog bark. Then the singing draws to a close around 3 am, leaving almost complete silence in the darkness, for a few minutes. Around 3:30, the dog chorus begins, with the occasional rooster call mingled in.

It's a noisy night in Addis Ababa. And jet lag is a monster. So I write.

Sleeping on the plane was really hard. Blowing up that neck pillow to just right, trying to utilize the two seats in my possession to their full potential, but never really finding that sweet spot. Then, just barely -- a sweet drifting into sleep land -- only to be awakened by the fasten seatbelt sign illuminated. Or time for another meal or another drink. "Sorry to wake you," they say. Yeah....hmmm.

One thing I loved, even though they don't always help keep me asleep -- the babies. The adorable sleeping {and sometimes not} babies in their mother's arms. Mothers so patient. Mothers with two other children to chide while baby cries during descent. Children who giggle during turbulence. Little girls who make friends with neighbors, coloring and talking about Finding Nemo and all kinds of favorite things. Children who can love and be loved in any language, whose smiles bring the whole cabin of passengers together.

One thing I don't love -- upset and rambling deportees. This poor gentleman must have been searching for any excuse to get off that plane, crying "I need a doctor", "this plane is not safe", and "I have a breathing problem, get medical record". repeatedly, really without taking any breaths. The flight attendants kept him in the back of the plane. He calmed down shortly after takeoff.

The singing man is back -- joining the now huge chorus of dogs. This land is anything but quiet at night.

{One more flight today....then hopefully a time of rest and rejuvenation before village-visiting and mucho picture taking. Hope to be able to update you often.}