Saturday, August 3, 2013

Day Nine: Saying Good-bye to Ethiopia

Lasting Impressions:

* Ethiopians are very friendly and welcoming to tourists. We always felt safe walking alone through town.

* Even knowing we were going during the rainy season we were surprised by how lush and green the landscape was.

* The poverty in Ethiopia is heartbreaking at times. Some salespeople know to appeal to our guilt for tips and to entice purchases. Our taxi driver in Addis told us he was struggling in order to get an increased fare (after convincing us he knew where he was going and then we had to ask for directions). Another girl when she failed to convince Craig to buy a scarf through
Our Route in Ethiopia
flattery said, "You are a beautiful man, but you would be more beautiful with this scarf." Then she said outright, "I know you don't need this scarf, but I am a student and need books, please help me."

* After many feeble attempts at bartering, we were so pleased with ourselves to negotiate our taxi fare down from 400 Birr to 150!

* Anytime that power, water, and internet are all working is cause for celebration. Sending emails from a hot shower is difficult though...

* Like in many countries, men commonly hold hands, and show affection physically. We were surprised by how clingy and one sided this sometimes seemed. But it was cute when due to pedestrian traffic they would be forced to seperate and then reach for each other once past the obstacle.
Just a picture to break up the text.
* The division is labour is unequal along gender lines, with women doing the majority of the work for less pay. This was highlighted when we walked past a construction site and three men stood watching three women shovel gravel.

* We never did get the hang of pronouncing anything in Amharic. Although Craig did get to use the one phrase he could remember. Aznalo Yelem. It was not clear when we were taught "I'm sorry, I don't have" when we would use it. Then Craig had a child beg for candy, so happy to use the only phrase he had the child must have thought he was an evil man the way he took such pleasure in depriving a child of a treat.
Another picture

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