Driving Again...!!!

Trip Start May 31, 2006
Trip End Oct 14, 2006

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Flag of Ethiopia  ,
Friday, July 14, 2006

We didn't get back very late from the Mursi people, and Ange asked if i wanted to change some money, which i did, and she'd found a local boy who said he'd take her somewhere she could change some money, so the two of us set off with our unofficial tour Guide. His name was Ferew, he spoke good english and proceeded to give us a tour of Jinka whilst taking us where we needed to go...first we went to the market and got to smell some of the spices and got told how they use them in their cookery, we then saw the bees with their pollen in a pile at the market...i still don't quite get that one...then we went via a house/shop and Ange tryed some snuff...she didn't look hugely impressed. We then carried on down to the weavers, but couldn't get in to see them at that point as it was closed up, at this point i had a little girl of about 2 or 3 by my feet clutching on to the strap of my bag saying every 30 seconds or so 'hellllo helllllo' Very cute but would've become kinda annoying, but after a while someone guided her away as she was wandering too far from home. We went via the Blacksmith, basically a banana plant roof over some coals with a bellow built into the ground by the coals. Then we stopped via a house, and the kid told this guy we wanted to change some money so he took us to the bank and opened it for us, and changed our money for us...new one on me...can't see UBS giving that kind of service! Then we went up above the town to the museum and saw the view back over the town - quite impressive. It was about this point we realised we'd been away nearly an hour and all the girls knew was that we'd popped to change some money so we decided it was time to head back and so the girls then came with us to buy our guide a fruit juice (as the Ethiopians are good at their fruit juices) and then we ended up buying him dinner too (by this point the guys were absolutely trollied on a local tej (honey wine - very sweet and quite potent you drink it out of mini vases, is the easiest way to describe it)). We then left to head to bed and our driver had disappeared so we couldn't get our stuff, so it was Ferew to the rescue again as he went to their room and got the keys for us and then we gave him a little tip for helping us out so much.

The following morning we were in the bus by 7.30 to start on our route to Awasa...we picked up some local passengers to help the drivers cover the cost of the previous day when we made them help us cover the land cruiser cost...and then we drove, and we drove, and we drove, stopping long enough for a tea at 10am and to buy a couple of souvenirs out of the window and to drop off passengers, but that was it...until 5.30 that evening when we arrived in a small where the road was completely blocked by people. There was a funeral and obviously the whole town was attending. There must have been 500 or more people just processing the whole width of the road, so we pulled over and went to a restaurant for our lunch/dinner...and had my best ethiopian dinner yet (it could've just been that i was that hungry). Then we started driving again...as the procession was slowly heading home again...and we drove until we hit awasa at midnight...we were taken to our camping ground...a tiny stretch of grass on the bank...and i mean almost where the water was lapping...by lake awasa...we vetoed that...then there was a suggestion of a cheap hotel, so we agreed, and ended up in prostitue street, we vetoed that...so finally at 12.30 we pulled up to a nice hotel and when the rooms were too expensive they agreed we could camp there, but not on the grass...only in the car park...well by this time i think we would have camped anywhere so we set up camp and fell into our beds!
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