This is one of the pictures of strangers I took in Ethiopia that I liked best. It was the day after we celebrate Christmas in the United States, but since everyone but Green from Kenya, Habtom from Eritrea, and I were Ethiopian, and celebrated a couple weeks later, I think I got especially homesick, and I took a walk alone outside Ficchee on our free day. As I was walking farther away from the city, I saw this woman standing there with an infant in her arms, and I said hello in Amharic and Oromic (at that time I didn’t know much more than hello and how are you, and I feel like I’m forgetting most things outside of those), and since I had a camera with me, I sort of suggested I take her picture, and she seemed all right with it. Then I waved, and I don’t know if I said “may God bless you” in these languages to her or said it under my breath, but I intend it even now. I kept walking, and I felt like I was seeing the countryside undiluted by my own preconceptions but even by the perceptions of my dear friends from Addis Ababa, Zway, Arsi, Asmara, etc. Just the other day I was reading a history book that mentioned of all places Fitche, and again I missed all the wonderful friends and even kindly strangers who were there. I’m still excited, it’s where Lelisie, Habtom’s wife is from, too, and I can’t wait to visit him, and I hope by the time I do, she’s there already.