Two Months...Really

The lease for our house was supposed to be signed on by Hanok (house hunter who has power of attorney) before we left the States, but because this is Ethiopia it didn’t get done until day 4 of us being here. In addition to both agreeable parties being available to sign, they have to make their way to a government office in order for it to be legal. And said office has to be open. Oh, and also have power.

Finally, the stars aligned.

The rainy season, typically June-September, started early this year, which delayed the actual moving of our things an additional day. Once the moving ceased, the kids helped me open all the totes. My only goal was to find a tub of toys to busy the kids on the 2nd floor while I unpacked on the 3rd floor, the floor which our family occupies.

Meanwhile, outside was a downpour. The heaviest rain we had seen thus far in Ethiopia. Before I could even clean the dirt out of the wardrobe in my room, I heard the kids squealing with excitement about water on the stairs. Indeed, water was pouring in from a corner window. I lay down 3 towels to soak up the mess and called for Keith.

Next, I walked in to mop the room we had planned for the kids to sleep in and the water pouring from the ceiling had spread nearly wall to wall.

I continued my cleaning spree by looking for rooms dry enough to mop.

Every room I walked into was leaking in water, either from a window, door, ceiling…or all 3.

Numerous water leaks + a house that has been collecting dirt for 6 months of vacancy = Mud. Everywhere.

Sounds like the worst day ever, right? Ah, but this is where God’s divine workings and providence come into play.

In addition to us, the tenants, in the house were the following: Hanok (house hunter/translator/power of attorney/Ethiopian extraordinaire), the home owners, the home builder, and the maintenance man. The owners were adamant that all issues be fixed. “Fix it tomorrow,” the wife said to the builder and maintenance man. She was not happy.

Had the rain come before or after those individuals were present in the house, we would be living and sleeping amongst the rain and mud for who knows how long. If they hadn’t seen with their own eyes that the water was coming from a window, sink or toilet (oh, yes, those were leaking too), they wouldn’t have believed it.

There were other things getting fixed. I think the only thing that worked upon move in were the doors (they opened) and cold water (it came out of most sinks).

Weeks later after multiple visits from both owner and builder, there were still 14 leaky windows/doors to be fixed, the kitchen sink, a toilet and at least 1 bathroom sink. One day it sounded like someone was taking a shower on the stairs. But, no, it was the roto (small-ish water tank on the roof) overflowing, which poured into our house from that top-most corner window. And all the way down the stairs to the entry way.

Now, almost 2 months after moving in, we are still dealing with leaks, but I no longer run around pulling up curtains and putting down towels each time I hear rain.

More importantly, we are in a house. All 5 of us. Just the 5 of us. Well, 6 of us with Ann Rae, but she’s family for the next year. It’s been a long time. We have seen God’s provision and it is good.