Category Archives: Travel

02.23.2011

Two years ago we were united with Mastewal and Afton in Ethiopia.


ethiopia trip: 09.26.2009

Saturday

Meet Wondeye.

He shows bike and shoes. He is happy.

Wondeye and his new bike

It is Meskel.

Go to the fish market.

Love the kids. One girl grabs candy from my purse (on her own).

Eat Fish, PleaseI wanted what she had: Mango Popsicle

Have some awesome fish.

Cooking the FishYummyDSC_0300DSC_0308DSC_0309DSC_0307DSC_0305DSC_0310DSC_0315DSC_0316

Take some pictures.

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Take in the view one more time.

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Coffee Ceremony with Wondeye’s Family

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Beef for Meskel

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Go to lunch. Tebs anyone?

Go to AWASSA CHILDRENS PROJECT show. Supposed to start at 2pm.

Realize this is Ethiopia and it will start in another hour or so.

Have some cokes at Pinna.

Go to show.

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Amazing. Awesome.  Love it.

Have machiatos.

Walk to fire for Meskel.

Everyone is celebrating. Everyone is walking.

This is when I believe Wondeye steals my camera.

Say goodbye to Wondeye.

Call it a Day.


ethiopia trip: 09.25.2009

Friday

Met Wondeye. Showed his new shirt and trousers that he purchased with the extra birr.  He seems happy.

We start a trek to an overlook of the Lake.

We enter this neighborhood. I have candy (kueureumela). I always have candy. Kids like candy. Kids are excited to see ferenge. I am excited to give kids candy and ask their names in Amharic. This is totally for me—it makes me feel good.

Starting the trek (in the neighborhood)

Starting the trek (in the neighborhood)

greetings from children

greetings from children

growing in number

growing in number

one kid

one kid

two kids

two kids

three kids, four

three kids, four

five, six, seven kids...how many more?

five, six, seven kids...how many more?

sweet girl

sweet girl

It’s raining. I think it’s a bigger deal for them than it is for me. We take shelter outside a little apartment. We’re invited to “come, sit”. We do. I’m glad. I get to interact with some children. Share my bracelets and kueureumela. Learn their names. Masharet, Bruke, Tigist.  Play with Tigist’s hair. They show me their doll.  Her name is “doll”. Take photos. Practice my Amharic.

shelter from the rain

shelter from the rain

Masharet, Tigist & Bruke

Masharet, Tigist & Bruke

Masherat

Masharet

Tigist

Tigist

"Come, Sit"

"Come, Sit"

Back to the trek. Many times I’m told to “take care”. Hmmmm.  “I have been on a few hikes/treks in America” I think to myself. I have to remind them that it’s normal for me to stumble a little because “I’m clumsy”.

Get to the peak. Nice.

The Lake

The Lake

Nice View

Nice View

Wondeye and Ayele

Wondeye and Ayele

Blue Birds.

Blue Bird

Blue Bird

Take a gari! I only have printed pics of this, maybe I can scan one in later 🙂

Eat some roasted tebs at an another place.

Give birr for Wondeye to get a bike to make transportation to school more easy and affordable.

Shoe shine. Guy chewing chat. Very happy. My feet and chacos stink. I tell Ayele to tell “chat guy” that’s why he can’t shine my shoes as he wanted. Hilarious. Nice to hear people laugh.

referenced "chat guy" in background

referenced "chat guy" in background


ethiopia trip: 09.24.2009

Thursday

Moved to the other Lewi (I’m tired of packing and unpacking). I will stay here the next tree nights. It’s nice.

Had breakfast. Joined by Wondeye.

Traveled around Awassa to several offices, finally found Awassa Childrens Project. Took a brief tour of the campus. Met a volunteer from Belgium, got another contact name and # for future volunteer opportunities. Invited to the show taking place on Saturday.

Awassa Childrens Project: Youth  Campus

Awassa Childrens Project: Youth Campus

One Love. One Fight.

One Love. One Fight.

Children's Artwork

Children's Artwork

Went to the Awassa Market. Fell down. Gave habesha a good laugh at this ferenge. Found out that not just children want to have their pictures taken with a digital camera 🙂

Awassa Market

Awassa Market

Eggs Anyone

Eggs Anyone

Take Our Photo Please

Take Our Photo Please

Traveled to Shashemene. RASTAland!  Visited a rastaman’s business and mini-museum. Something was in the air there….and there were a lot of happy and ANGRY people in this area. Went to the Shashemene market. Rode in a mini-taxi. CRAZY and CRAZY driver. I prefer the car, thank you very much.  I became obsessed with finding the mini tins that the children carry their lunch in for school.  Found them.  Then I wanted baskets that everyone seemed to have on their bikes.  A girl at the market helped us out tremendously, found the best place and looked the baskets over for me.  In the middle of my excursion I get a phone call from the US (Seth).  As if I needed something else to draw attention to myself, I’m standing in the middle of market…..the only white person around…..my guide/driver/friends a few feet away…..talking on a cell phone….feeling very uncomfortable with everyone staring at me.

View from the Mini Taxi

View from the Mini Taxi

Helpful girls in the Shashemene Market

Shashemene Market: Middle Girl Helped Me A Lot

Head back to Awassa.

Gave Wondeye birr to pay for his school uniform so he could attend school. Thanks for hanging out and beating trucks and kids off of me. I didn’t mind the kids 🙂 Thanks for helping me to not get ran over by trucks and gari at both markets. Thanks for helping me up from my fall at the market. Thanks for the constant reminders to “take care”.

Lunch was something that I didn’t order, but got anyway.

Dinner was fish and dabbo (I think) at a place with really cool chairs.


ethiopia trip: 09.23.2009

Wednesday

Awassa

I think I had breakfast at the Lewi Hotel. Some type of cake after ordering everything that seemed appealing and being told they don’t have it.

We then checked out of the Gebrekristo and headed toward finding accommodations at one of the Lewi hotels, they are nicer–and yes, more touristy.  We quickly learned that if Ayele filled out the little cards for the rooms we would get a cheaper (habesha) price for rooms than if I completed them (ferenge price). He started filling out the cards 🙂

We then headed toward the big attraction in Awassa: THE LAKE

I loved it. I could have stayed there FOREVER . It was peaceful.

After some negotiations with boat guides/drivers. We were booked to see the hippos in the afternoon–and we had made a new “friend”/”guide”–a 19 year old boy Wondeye, who fought for a better deal for this ferenge. It ended up costing me a lot more at the end of my trip (I’ll write about that for Sunday’s post) but for this day (Wednesday), thanks for your help.

I think that I had roasted tebs again for lunch/dinner and then maybe french fries for dinner/dinner (so I could take my malaria meds).

Big Birds

Big Birds

Big Birds Little Boy

Big Birds Little Boy

First Monkey

First Monkey

Boats to Hippos

Boats to Hippos

Workin' Out A Deal

Workin' Out A Deal

Agreement Reached

Agreement Reached

While I Watched and Relaxed on a Nearby Overlook

While I Watched and Relaxed on a Nearby Overlook

On the Lake: On the Way to the Hippos

On the Lake: On the Way to the Hippos

Hippos

Hippos


ethiopia trip: 09.22.2009

Tuesday

Breakfast at hotel. Coco puff type cereal with keuzkazza weutuet (cold milk), some types of bread and Addis shai (tea).

Immediately got an international calling card for Ayele’s phone and purchased some chapstick, because I think that I’ve already lost the two that I brought with me.

Start the car ride to Awassa.

It is beautiful and nice to be out of Addis. Everything is so green.

Stop in Ziway for lunch at Tourist Hotel. See other ferenge (foreigners) dining as well. I ordered spaghetti with marinara sauce.

Make my first phone call to US! I could only talk about 5 minutes, sobbed most of the time but am now relieved. At least they (my family) know that I’m okay. I also relay as much information as I can about baby Eyob to relay to Emily–because I had been unable to send pics or email to her.  It was around 4:00 in the morning in the US, but I couldn’t wait any longer to call.

After the phone call I couldn’t really finish my meal and we continued on to Awassa.

Stopped at Lake Langano, which I had seen pictures of and was also really interested in seeing.  We went to see the lake by way of a lodge, if we took pictures we had to pay (at least that’s how I understood it) in some form.  We had keukazza cokes.  We also then were taken on “tour” of the Langano Lodge. It may have been nice if you were traveling with your family and wanted to stay there a little longer, but really all I could see was the chocolate milk water and honestly, because I had seen beautiful pictures of this lake before, I was a little disappointed. Maybe the other photos were from a different area on the lake, and I wasn’t really trying to spend more time looking for it, I wanted to get to Awassa.

The "guide" at the Langano Lodge (Girma) and his sister

The "guide" at the Langano Lodge (Girma) and his sister

Lake Langano

Lake Langano

Lake Langano

Lake Langano

I was here.

I was here.

So finally, after full day of travel we made it to the destination. I had previously looked up the Gebrekristo hotel (had seen it on www.hobotraveler.com, because it was very inexpensive and since I was also paying for a room for my guide/friend/driver I really wanted to stay at this place.

Ummmmm…okay……not what I expected, really—and my standards weren’t even set that high.  Do you ever just get a “feeling” about a place?  It didn’t feel secure. I couldn’t really put my finger on it.  Anyway. First night in Awassa and room booked at the Gebrekristo.

After securing the room, Ayele wanted to get fuel—just because it’s the thing to do when you’re far from Addis I suppose—just to make sure that  you have some when needed. Several of the fueling stations were out of fuel and we pulled to the end of the line at the last place with fuel—and it was mayhem. The craziest thing I’d seen on my trip so far. There were what seemed like hundreds of the mini-taxis waiting and weaving their way into the station for fuel.  Maybe it was the end of the workday….maybe they knew something that we didn’t……but it was INSANE and FUN at the same time.  People knocking on the window, chatting, little taxis everywhere. Kids selling shet (which sounds like the curse word) and it means coal.  More kids selling some other type of natural chewing stick — that isn’t chat — people realizing that there is a ferenge in a car and trying to talk to me.  I laughed  a lot during our what seemed like forever wait. Some mini-taxis even cut in front of us and I have no idea what was being said between Ayele and other drivers, but it was all in fun.

After that was dinner at the Gebrekristo (rice and cooked veggies, dabbo).


ethiopia trip: 09.21.2009

Monday

*updated with pic of roasted tebs that I found on www.hobotraveler.com

Didn’t sleep well. Worried about calling home. I want them to know that I made it safely.

Immediately went to internet cafe to email. A little relieved, although it’s early there it’s still the middle of the night in United States, so I won’t know if the message was received for a while.

Went to Antica for pizza lunch (I skipped breakfast).

Traveled to see friend’s baby.  Oh my goodness. I could have stayed there ALL DAY. He is a very happy baby, can’t wait to see him here soon! So impressed with the facility and the care that the children receive there.

Me and Baby Eyob

Me and Baby Eyob

Playing & Laughing

Playing & Laughing

Feeding Time

Feeding Time

Telling Him His Family is Coming Soon and They Love Him Very Much!

Telling Him His Family is Coming Soon and They Love Him Very Much!

Took donations to Emily. Visited briefly. Checked out her apartment.

Started the journey to Awassa.

Stayed in Nazret (Adama) Monday night.

Had roasted tebs at a local place….oh my goodness….my new favorite Ethiopian food….although I still like shiro….the two make a great combo with injera.

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