Published: September 27th 2005June 17th 2005
I am sorry I have gone so long without blogging, but when I was in Addis I had no time, but now that I have gotten to Harare, there are difficulties with the internet. I have written some blogs that I will post when I have better internet access from my last fews days in Ethiopia, but quickly I will give you a overview of Harare.
( I don't want to lose my connection)
Already, we have noticed the political situation here. We have a arranged state visit and everything is very scripted. We are supposed to travel to a rural hospital, but there is a fuel shortage, so we don't know if we will be able to go. The internet is spotty at best and today I finally found a computer that connected.
I went to UNICEF and the crown jewel hospital in the country. I found everyone very polite, but uneasy about answering direct questions. We are treated like royality because they want us to have a good impression of their medical services. I will say that the hospital was wonderful compared to the conditions we were in Ethiopia and the technology is more advanced. But HIV is still killing 10-14% of it's population.
The exhange rate is 9922.00 to 1 US and the unoffical rate is 18,000 to 1.. So things cost like 250,000.. like a hamburger today was 130,000. The hotels of course only take US dollars because you can get black market rate and the Zim Dollar is not worth as much.
The tourist industry is dead here so, the econmy is dying too. The airport was new and modern but almost a ghost town. Don't worry we are very welcome and taken care of. UNICEF which is United Nations is our host and things really work well for them. I am kind of a celebrity. :) I have to stop here, my time on the computer is running out. I can't send pictures I am afraid it would take days to download one. I will catch up later with the last diary for Ethiopia later... which will include my visit to a orphange and another city called Nazet.
Just a side note you can't imagine how uplifting your comments and support have been. I had no idea that I would be followed so closely. It has made me feel connected to everyone. I have no way of knowing how many are following me, but everyday I get comments from surprise people. Chief... give me a hint as to who you are??? Thank you for all the kind words and praise. I am just here for a moment, praise the ones that do this everyday. I can go home to my western life but they stay and fight everyday. So not only pray for me, but pray for those who can't leaven and choose to stay. They are whom we all should look up too!
(Pray for a better internet connection so I can send the beautiful pictures I have taken! ! :))