A Great Visit...

We met Dawn and Bernie Berlesman in the Washington DC airport on January 24th 2009. We knew we would be meeting them and another couple that was also traveling to Ethiopia to get their new kids, because we had been in contact via email and we were all on the same flight over.

Dean and I were sitting in the airport Chili's."Carole Turner?" I heard a kind female voice say and I looked up. It was Dawn, she had recognized me from my blog. "I'm Dawn" she said.

We all made our introductions and hand shakes and within minutes we were sharing dinner and conversation about what was ahead for us as we traveled to Ethiopia to bring home children.

That night I knew we would be friends.

The group we traveled with to Ethiopia were all great, Lasting friendships were formed between all of us. We connected on a level not many will ever understand, a shared experience like no other, fastened our hearts together.

While in Ethiopia Dawn and I cried watching our children dance at the traditional Ethiopian restaurant. We cried talking about what our kids were leaving, both good and bad and we cried when Abel and Tsegaberhan (pronounced suh-gob-er-hon) had to leave the comfort and familiarity they had with each other when parting at the Washington DC airport, when we flew on to New Orleans and they flew on to Indiana.

But we knew we would stay in touch. For the kids...for us.

We went to visit them last Summer and now, they have come to visit us.

Tes and E doing the napkin dance at Boutins Cajun Restaurant

We took them to Boutin's for Cajun dancing and Tes (that's what some people call Tsegabrehan) was on the dance floor within 30 seconds. "I love this dancing" she said as she came back to the table. Then off she went to tell the 85 year old couple, who had been dancing all night, how much she liked their dancing. They of course, thought she was precious.

Abel didn't dance, he just watched Tes dance with the look on his face that said loudly "I love her. She is sunshine and laughter"

At our house, Tes wanted to hang out with Evangeline more then the boys. E danced with her, did her nails and they talked about Hannah Montana and American Idol. Steele and Abel played with Bayleigh's (Tes's brother) D.S. or they played the xbox and there was the constant noise of the Plasma cars on the wood floors, Tes LOVED the Plasma cars. They provided hours of laughter and fun on the rainy days.

all the kids at Boutin's on the back porch feeding the Turtles

Tes was amazed by the amount of "dark" people that live here in Louisiana "mom, I never knew dark people lived in America." and she proceeded to talk freely with as many "dark" people she could. (Where she lives in Indiana, the only "dark" people she knows are also from Ethiopia).

"Mom, we have those in Ethiopia, can we give her money?" she pronounced as they passed by an homeless lady on the corner of North Foster. The rest of the day she seemed a little sad.

They all went to the Dream Center for church with us on Sunday, met Pastor Craig, Hope, and a lot of our church family. Then we all went to the HPAC where Bernie and Dean played football with a bunch of other BRDC guys..most of them, out of shape, who are all still sore today.

Yesterday we took them to the Cajun Village in Sorrento where they bought some T shirts dyed in Louisiana dirt and last night I made Creole Jambalaya to finish out their Baton Rouge Cajun experience.

Today they headed down to New Orleans for an engineers convention that Bernie has to be at this week. I told them all the cool sites to see and places to go to in the Big Easy.

They left Baton Rouge with some Tony's Cajun seasoning, a Winborne CD signed by lead singer Jordan Earles and some Cajun recipes. I think Louisiana culture will forever be with them.

So, the truth is, I haven't blogged since last Wednesday because I've just been to busy living life, having a great times with friends and It was wonderful!!

Dawn, Tes, E, Steele, Abel, Bernie, Bayleigh

Abel outside the Cabin restaurant in Sorrento

E at the Cajun village

Abel and I at the Cajun village

Bayleigh at the Pop and Go convenience store near our house that the kids walked to.

Tsegaberhan looking adorable at the Cajun village.

Dawn and Tsegaberhan at the Cajun village.

Steele at the Cajun village.

All the kids by the signs at the Cajun village.


jennifer maggio said…
brings tears to your eyes..beautiful story.
Carey said…
What fun and wonderful times!

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