Blogs from Jimma, Oromia Region, Ethiopia, Africa - page 4

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Africa » Ethiopia » Oromia Region » Jimma February 11th 2010

Addis has proper change, unlike Jimma where costs are usually rounded to the nearest Birr. I gave all my change away. Addis is the only place I have ever worn a money belt in, I usually don’t wear them because I don’t like any unsightly bulges showing up on my person ala Jefferson Darcy. That was from the episode where the Darcys and Bundys went to England, the Darcys lost all their money and had to stay at an S&M club the whole time…I think the place was called the Whipped Pony. I forget why the Bundys went. Al had to battle some guy, it wasn’t Spare Tire, but I forget what for. I am actually pretty confident in the Whipped Pony, why I remember this, I don’t know. That episode must’ve aired 15 years ago. ... read more

Africa » Ethiopia » Oromia Region » Jimma February 10th 2010

The main thing we wanted to do in Addis was see their famous market. We tried to follow the Lonely Planet map which was helpful in getting us from the Immigration office to the general area of the market, then we were sort of lost. There were some traffic cops so I asked them, “Merkato?” and they pointed to a side street. We walked up and were still kind of lost. A professional looking guy was asked us what we wanted, and I replied,”Uhh…souvenirs.” He took us up to what I would learn to be the antique district and dropped us off at his cousin’s store. The stores were mostly small, narrow, shacks. Looked around at all the cool junk. Most of the shops had more or less the same stuff: the walls would be covered ... read more

Africa » Ethiopia » Oromia Region » Jimma February 7th 2010

Helpful Ethiopia visa information: One month visas can be obtained with no problem at Bole airport. Bole takes USD and Euro, if you are using Euro try to have correct change as they do not make change. The immigration office in Addis only takes USD. If you need a lengthier visa, you’ll either need to get it beforehand or go to the immigration office in Addis off of Zambia St. and Churchill St. Head North on Gambia St, which will turn into Churchill. You will pass the Derg Monument which has a large red star on top of it. Turn onto the next street, Zambia, and the steps leading up to the Immigration office should be visible. There will be a lot of taxis and people standing around as well as Ethiopians waiting for visas or ... read more

Africa » Ethiopia » Oromia Region » Jimma February 7th 2010

Most of these events went down during the time when the two girls were missing. Earlier Sunday one of the students noticed that $200 of hers was missing from her money belt. She was fairly certain that the money went missing in the Jimma hotel. I doubted this but said alright, lets tell management that some money might have went missing here just so they know. The Jimma hotel has individual door locks and there is only 1 key, the maids need your key to clean the room, but Hotel Abebe in Assendabo has pad locks that were jimmied open on at least 1 occasion when a student was locked out. When they got back to Assendabo one student could tell that her stuff had definitely been gone through and stuff was missing. They went to ... read more

Africa » Ethiopia » Oromia Region » Jimma February 6th 2010

Night finally came. One of the girls had the schedule down, “Time goes by quickly from 8 till 12, then 12 to 4 you’re like, damn this is taking long, then 4-7 you’re like damn that went fast, then you wait for 9 and can finally go to bed.” Our party started at 8. We had some snacks including 20 of these muffin sized fried breads called Kokar that the girls busted out early. The party was the 9 of us students and maybe 5 or so of the townspeople that helped the Assendabo group. We went into the detached side room with the drapes which was actually a pretty big room. There was a dining table right when you entered with maybe eight chairs, and on the other side of the room, separated by maybe ... read more

Africa » Ethiopia » Oromia Region » Jimma February 6th 2010

Chat (pronounced like chat room) is leafy plant that when chewed and ingested produces mixed highs. We had heard everything from it being like a sugar rush to people full out hallucinating. Pretty much everyone does it. In both Jimma and Assendabo every other person is carrying chat under their arm, which comes in a bushel that is put in a plastic shopping, the stems are sticking out of the bag’s top. We don’t know how addictive the plant actually is, but several locals have said most people would rather chew chat than get a job and work. Even professionals chew chat, so it’s not just a lower class thing. So after seeing all this chat, we had to try it. Before the party in Assendabo, we had our own little chat party. The person who ... read more

Africa » Ethiopia » Oromia Region » Jimma February 6th 2010

We are working in Jimma and the seven other PA/MPH Touro students are working in Assendabo. They were having a party Friday night, and Regina and I decided to go see what Assendabo is all about. Plus we could go for a party as we have been doing nothing but work since we got here! The ride was by minivan which had 11 seats: driver and shotgun, 3 rows of two-seats and the back three-seats. I tried to count how many people were in the damned thing; I think it was 20 something not counting children on laps. We weren’t as cramped as some, we got actual seats, but there was still not much room to move. All Ethiopian drivers think they’re Michael Schumacher; cutting corners, taking the inside, swerving to avoid livestock. The scenery gave ... read more

Africa » Ethiopia » Oromia Region » Jimma February 2nd 2010

Just wanted to say a quick thanks to friends and family who comment, whether here or through email. Sorry I do not respond to everything...the xylophone is fur sure involved in catchiness of that damned song, and who could ever be mad at Kira?... read more

Africa » Ethiopia » Oromia Region » Jimma January 31st 2010

The next day, Thursday, was the coffee gang’s last night in Jimma. So we went back to the alley way hotel and got a gemba, a small one, which was disappointing, so we got a large one after we finished the small one. By the time we finished the large gemba the place was basically closed and no one else was there, again. We went to the same bar on the street, the only place open, again. The bartenders told us that we were the only white people to ever go into the bar. One of the Kenyans was pounding beers and the German not wanting to be outdone followed suit. Vigorous man dancing ensued. One of the Kenyans was a pretty exceptional dancer. A little later part of our group was outside and I followed ... read more

Africa » Ethiopia » Oromia Region » Jimma January 31st 2010

Wednesday night we went out with the German again. We had told him about a hotel/restaurant we went to on a side street/alley where they serve beer out of a large tube with a spigot at the bottom for serving, so he of course had to check it out. The beer tubes are evidently called “Gembas”. They weren’t hard to find on the menu as all the beers were 5-7 birr and then there were two that were 50 and 80 birr. Those must be the ones. We wanted the large one but got the small. It was 3 liters, not a deal for 50 birr, you pay for the novelty. By the time the tube was empty, the place we were at was completely shut down and closed. We walked out the alley onto a ... read more




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