>I arrived in Addis Ababa yesterday (January 16, 2012) around mid-day. And contrary to any travel advice that I would provide to anyone else, I crashed in my room. But in a secondary effort to get on the new time zone, I set the alarm for 6:30pm, at which time I got up (despite my total groggy state), did some exercises, got dressed, and went to dinner. Then I was able to welcome Janet when she arrived at around 10pm. It worked! Today I feel ready to go!
I did have a little travel glitch yesterday with my luggage, but thankfully, it worked out in the end. I had asked the agent in NYC if he could check my luggage through to Addis, even though I was changing airlines in Dubai. He told me “no” as I would have to pick up my luggage in Dubai and proceed to an Emirates transfer desk. That made sense to me as I’ve seen it work that way before. Well, when I got to Dubai, that was NOT the case. The baggage claim was outside of customs, so there was no way for me to retrieve my bag. I proceeded to an Emirates transfer desk, where the agent assured me they would retrieve my bag for me and transfer it to my flight. This was when I was very happy that I had allowed for a long layover in Dubai due to my change in airlines, as this gave them enough time to do that. And sure enough, when I arrived yesterday, my bag arrived with me!
To give you a little bit of a sense of where I am, Ethiopia is the second largest country in terms of population in Africa with about 82 million people, while it is the tenth largest in size (out of a total of 54 African countries) It shares borders with Kenya to the south, Sudan and South Sudan to the west, Eritrea (which used to be a part of Ethiopia) to the north, Djibouti and Somalia to the east. It is the most populous land-locked country in the world. The capital city of Addis Ababa has a population of about 5 million people. It became the capital because it is in the exact center of the country.
Our actual group doesn’t convene until dinner tonight. Will try to post again to fill you in on our day.
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