November 22

Dear Diary,
I met some Americans at school today. A husband and wife traveling through Ethiopia, looking at the way we are taught. They were surprised that my class has old and young people in it; some are married women with children. Well, if you are married at twelve years old, that can happen. But I think it’s good that people of all ages are trying to get an education. If I can finish primary school and go into secondary school, then I will study hard for my tests and get the chance to go to university in Addis Ababa. My aaket Yenee lives in a nice house in the capitol city; when she came to Merzeneb’s wedding, she told me that I could stay with her during university. She gave me a beaded necklace that belonged to my grandmother.

Tonight the moon was full over the village. I could hear the far-off sounds of monkeys in the trees, and I thought I also heard hyenas. Sometimes I forget how many wild animals we share this county with. The Americans made a fuss over the Rift Valley and how it is one of the most beautiful places in the world. But to me, it is just part of the country I call home.

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