Final Visit to ATARC & Rose Growing Facility

This morning I had a great discussion and scripture study with my family this morning via Skype, and I even had the webcam working.  I am looking forward to seeing them in less than a week! I had a quick breakfast, loaded the truck and headed for ATARC (Adami Tulu Animal Research Center). We dropped off Abera at the Negele office, stopped to buy some gifts for my family, and picked up Gebre on our way there. Having Gebre along helped us get past the guard at ATARC, though he still looked us over carefully before letting us in.  The whole dairy crew was there, so I taught them about using an ultrasound and went through all of the steps of flushing (retrieving) embryos, showing them each of the items in the backpack that I left them.  They are hesitant to proceed for fear of failure, but I hope that knowledge and experience will push them past that barrier.

In between the visits to the federal research centers, I stopped at the rose farm in Ziway.  I had met Eddy, the building contractor, on my last visit, and he had invited me for a tour.  They currently have over 850 acres of greenhouses in Ziway, and they are the largest rose grower in the world.  Eddy's company builds the structures for the rose growers.  I talked with him about getting different types of building materials for our projects.  They get their materials from Israel, the US, and China. Eddy is a Jew from Israel that has worked in many different countries.  He was married four months ago, and his wife just recently moved to Ziway with him.  I consider it another tender mercy that I ran into him.  At one point in our conversation, he said that he had a guy ask him about building a dairy.  He is going to meet him in Holeta tomorrow and asked if I would like to go along.  I readily agreed so he is picking me up at 7:30 am tomorrow.

I met with Dr. Tamrat at DZARC and left him with the supplies for embryo transfer work and also left eight embryos to implant.  I encouraged him to work together with the other research institutions.  Each place has expertise and equipment, but together they would have the strength of their combined knowledge. Ironically it worked out that all of them need something that the other has in order to actually go through the full superovulation and transfer process.  Dr. Tamrat introduced me to a new PhD student who is going to do his dissertation on bovine reproduction, so ET may become part of his work.  I really like Dr. Tamrat, and see a very bright future for him. {Sidenote from Erika: On Christmas Day, Lonny received the best Christmas present he could have gotten when he got word that Dr. Tamrat had gone ahead and retrieved and transfered several bovine embryos successfully without Lonny's help! We were all so thrilled!}