What a Shift!

The New Place

We are in “adjustment mode” as we settle into our new home, process the information fire hydrant that has been sprayed on us over the past 2 weeks, and get used to the new sights and sounds of Addis Ababa. Warm welcomes abound and we are desperately trying to attach names to new faces.

SHELTER: We have been in our house for a little over a week and absolutely love it!  We inherited beautiful gardens and our backyard is adorned with a small tookel (hut-like veranda). Four families have children close to our girls’ ages, and we are told at the start of the school year there will be 37 kids in our our little “village compound.” A soccer field, small playground, basketball court, and short running trail help to make this a warm environment.

FOOD: Preparing food is much more labor intensive. We have to bleach our vegetables and fruit, and filter our drinking water. Some nicer stores offer familiar items such as bacon, Oreos, cereal, Nutella, Gatorade, cake mixes, root beer, but most of these goodies are 2 or 3 times the cost. Yesterday we saw a small turkey in an international grocery for $82.  Most groceries are smaller than an American convenience store, so it’s normal to go to a couple of stores to complete the list.

TRANSPORTATION: We are also glad to see the roads have improved. Fewer sheep and donkeys clutter the traffic roundabouts, but driving still somewhat like an obstacle course. Our new ride is a ’87 diesel Toyota Hiace van. It has been in the SIM family for all it’s life and well-maintained. Emily likes that it sits up high and has seatbelts, the girls like having their own space, and I like shifting on the column and being  flagged down by pedestrians waiting for a taxi.

WORK: Last week, Emily and the girls spent most of their days at Bingham Academy. The girls played in the gym, made crafts, visited their classrooms, while Emily attended school meetings as well as language and cultural sessions. I have attended meetings at the college, sifted through course materials, and fired numerous questions at seasoned teachers. School begins on the 22nd for me and 23rd for Emily. Your prayers are much appreciated!

 Humorous Moments 

1. Arriving in Ethiopia at 8am, we decided to force ourselves onto the new time schedule. After a long, whiny battle Sarah fell asleep on her tea cup at dinner. See pic.
2. If we lose power in the evenings, our giddy daughters run through the house with their new headlamps like crazy explorers.
3. Our courteous taxi driver last week passed around his last remaining window crank so we could get some fresh air while touring the city.
4. There is a flea-ridden mutt on the compound named Sarah who comes whenever I call my youngest in from the playground.
5. I have taught my girls a new term when referring to the “intestinal issues” associated with traveling, stress, new foods, etc. Our new idiom is much less embarrassing in public places. Code word: Scooby-Doos.


 Can I Get an Amen? 

  • We are dealing with the stress of transition with grace. Emily is still happy to be married to me.
  • We are healthy.
  • The Lord has surrounded us with numerous caring families who have gone out of their way to make us feel at home.
  • After five years of bringing teams to Ethiopia, I have longed for that “someday” when I could be here with my family. It’s hard to believe that “someday” is now. I am so thankful for all who have partnered with us through prayer and financial support.

Updated prayer requests are here.

2 thoughts on “What a Shift!

  1. Thanks for the update altho I get updated thru Candi. I am so so so jealous (in a good way) for your serve over there. Lots of prayers for you from Westminster. The Lord has laid it on my heart to pray for the girlies and their education (duhhhhhhhhhhh wonder why) and that they learn more than just reading and writing and ‘rithmetic…but how Jesus loves all his children and they can give away what they know about His love. I love both of you dearly and look forward to more stories. Come on Jesus, use the Craigs to change the kingdom in their care.
    Ann Mock

  2. Jason and Emily! I just signed up to support y’all! (I know I said July, and I am so sorry, but it will come out in August) I designated it under “support,” but will change that if y’all would rather it be designated somewhere else.

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