I am gearing up for my trip to Ethiopia! 58 days until I leave! I am very excited about all that is going on lately.About a month and half ago, I got engaged to my very best friend, Glen! We couldn’t be happier. Also, today marks my 30th day of Bikram hot yoga IN A ROW.I am doing a 60-day challenge, so I am half way there.I first started practicing yoga in Delhi, India at the Yoga Institute.It was brutal there, especially because I was in a room that was not air-conditioned, and it was probably 110 degrees Fahrenheit outside.This was during the summer of 2008 on my first volunteership.When I came home, a good friend and sorority sister of mine took me to my first ever Bikram yoga class.So, I went from starting my yoga practice in India – the birthplace of yoga – to a Bikram yoga studio.In no was I then, nor am I now, a professional yogi, so this was an intense class (and honestly, it still is).The room is heated to 105 degrees Fahrenheit and is approximately 50% humidity. The series is 26 postures and takes 90 minutes.Boy do you want an ice cold glass of water after that!I choose to do my Bikram yoga 60-day challenge at this time in my life for two reasons – for one I am beginning my application for medical school and needed a way to conquer the stress and two, I am nervous about embarking on my adventure to Ethiopia! First, I’ve never been there before so that’s always a cause for anxiety and also, I have developed this new found fear of flying.Who would’ve thought that the girl who took her first airplane ride as a 6 month old to Italy, would be afraid of flying.Side note, can you believe my mother would even consider taking a 6 month old on an trans-Atlantic flight?!
Because I have been up to my neck in studies (almost up to my nose, at this point), I was not able to take part in my 2nd benefit yardsale.I am still anticipating on raising approximately $800.We hope to get this accomplished over the next couple of weeks!
I am beginning the application for my visa, and I have all my inoculations up to date – which makes it more real that I am leaving soon.Hopefully I figure out a convenient luggage situation between now and then.I plan on bringing minimal clothing in a hiking backpack and maybe a hard suitcase to bring home all my treasures I find.I will more than likely get most of my clothes to wear in the orphanage when I arrive in Addis Ababa.This is what I did two summers ago when I went to the daycare in Dharmsala, India.Fun fact: I’m not shaving my legs the entire time I’m there, no product in my hair, not drying my hair, no makeup …. Nothing.It will be a nice way to detox my body, but I sure will be ready for the spa when I return home! (oh the luxuries we have in the US)
Glen and I have really been enjoying an authentic Ethiopian restaurant here in Chapel Hill.It’s called Queen of Sheba, and if you are in the area, I highly recommend you check it out.It’s very similar to Indian food, but still has its own unique flavors.I’m not sure what is my favorite, the peppermint tea (kind of like the type of tea my mom and I drank in the Nubian village in Egypt), the ice cream with chocolate syrup with CARDMOM (yum), or just all the ingeria that you use to eat your food – ingeria is the Ethiopian staple bread.Glen and I really enjoy eating foods from all over the world, and are always looking for something new to try.
I am really looking forward to the coffee in Ethiopia, as well!I have been having my own “Amharic lessons” (the Ethiopian national language) via youtube.It’s been interesting to say the least, haha.
Amesege'nallo' (Thank you….. thanks for the support, encouragement, donations, and kindness!),