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A meeting with two Dutch travellers in Gonder Ethiopia, in the 1990’s, and their companion 12-year-old Fikir Getahun, of Lalibela, ended with the opening of Fikir and Ray Lodge, in October of 2019. [Fikir’s photo on the left, and early phases of construction shown on the right]

‘Six Fingers’ (due to his sixth digit), held everyone of ‘Light of Trinity Church’ in awe, the day of our first meeting. By his unabashed enthusiasm, exceptional speaking skills, and knowledge of Ethiopian history. The youngster later returning to Lalibela with myself as chaperon, two days later.

Fikir, loved by many, tragically never saw completion of the lodge, which now bears his name. Fikir Getahun Besabih, sadly passed from us, in October of 2011.

Abebe Getahun, completed the lodge for his older brother, to help replace a hopelessness, of so many Lalibela families.

We are hopeful, that the kindness, and sensitivity, shown by this remarkable young man, becomes a source of inspiration for his friends, his admirers, and people of Lalibela.

 

-Raymond Doucette

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