Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Out of Africa

I'm officially back from visiting my distant relatives in Ethiopia!

"Hey ... any of you guys got any Imodium?"

Gelada baboons are pretty racist, I have to report. They will let you sit within 5 feet and totally ignore you if you are a tourist (and therefore harmless). When locals walk by, though, they scurry away nervously. They know the locals don't like 'em.

"Mum! Mum! Mum! Mum!"

Geladas live in the Simien Mountains. Ethiopia is very well endowed with mountains indeed, and gobsmackingly scenic:



Other major national resources include dust, donkeys (more than any other country except China)  and churches:

Yes, this is where they keep the Ark of the Covenant. As you can see, the roof leaks.
In the last two weeks I've been in DOZENS of churches (of which, more in a later post). I'm surprised my face hasn't melted off. Though come to think of it, I was struck down with diarrhea minutes after breaking these rules...

It was pointed out that I'd have have been fine if I'd slept with someone else's spouse...

Ethiopia is absolutely saturated with (Christian Orthodox) religion. It is all-pervasive. At 4 in the a.m. they kick off three-hour sung services which are broadcast by loudspeaker all over town.

And that's why the priests pass out during the afternoon

My favourite archangel, Uriel.
He carries a chalice in which he caught the blood of Christ. Okay, I so need to use that in Book 2...
We went in Lent, which means everyone had gone vegan for two months :-D
This is the national fasting-food platter. Lots of spice!

The grey pancake is "injera". Picture it as a piece of cold damp carpet-underlay.
You'll be glad to hear that I did find a holy corpse, as is my quest on every foreign holiday:


But Ethiopia offered plenty of surprises too!

Ben Abeba - Scottish-African fusion. Or Dr Seuss meets The Flintstones.

Like, not only is is still 2007 in Ethiopia ... but midday is at 6am (they count from dawn)!


And here is Sylvia Pankhurst's tomb in Addis Ababa :-D


It's like nowhere else on earth. Next Wednesday's post: rock-hewn churches and the biggest monolithic erection IN HISTORY.

Fnarr fnarr

3 comments:

Vida said...

MANSTRATION!!

2007? I did not know that.

Nym Nix said...

Manstration. I love it.

Madeleine Shade said...

Looks like fun!