How my landlady gave birth

Now, I am not going to give you a detailed account of the events that culminated in the birth of my … landlord junior.  Landlord senior did his damn thing despite being away from home most of the time and a new member of the family was brought home yesterday amid a lot of pomp and circumstance.

Rather, this piece has to do with the strange (not that strange, come to think of it) circumstances under which I heard the news. Wednesday I was washing clothes, cleaning the house and stuff. A much expected package arrives towards the end of the work – my friend brings home-grown green, to mean salad. He tells me that XX has given birth the previous day and that she is in the hospital. Word!? I for my part had my misgivings about the pregnancy. I cannot go around suspecting every woman that happens to frequent loose dresses of concealing a baby, now, can I? The soldier’s wife was also fond of wearing… wait a minute! The soldier’s wife is also…?!

He heard it from the shopkeeper whose suq was closed while she was away visiting the new mother. He had asked the kids in the house about the news and they had confirmed it. Damn it! Now it would be impossible for me to act like I had heard nothing – they know that he would pass on the news.

Earlier that day the cloth line had snapped and while I was cleaning spots of dirt, XY knocks and I answer the door. Later, I was to find out that he was returning from a night and an early morning in the hospital. We greet, I notice a certain kind of expression which I could not decipher at the moment and I am left half-wondering what I did wrong. I ask him “beteseb dehina new?” and he answers “dehina new”. Come on, what was he supposed to say? “beteseb CHemirual”?

There you have it- the punchline! Laugh, I kill you!


Don’t you just hate it when life turns into a series of chores? When I heard the news I was like “Just when I thought I was finishing up …” Tiredness came over me, the kind of which not even the mother felt post-partum. Why should I go to the hospital? XY himself had met me and he did not want to let me know. Instead, I had to hear about it through the grapevine. I tried to grow offended and I succeeded – I would give them a piece of my mind when they come back and if indignation so wills it, threaten to leave their house for them next month.

Nishite, nisawondime!

And I ended up going to the hospital.

For the record, they are arif sewoch.

A different story

I find a dead fly midway through the asa firfir. Asa firfir is like asa goulash but not quite. I get up to leave and the waiter asks me if there is anything wrong. He would not accept the money. I insist…

Let me paint a picture for you of the day I had been having. The students did not come to class because they had an exam the next day; the charger of the laptop was misbehaving, again; I was getting the chills, had my jacket zipped up at noon – a cold in the horizon. And then, a frigging fly in my meal?!

I was a semi-regular at the place. I would have liked it if I had acted a different way, if I had graciously told them that shit happens and not to let it happen again. Moreover, a Kamikaze fly could always get past their defenses.

My exit could have been better.

How am I supposed to return now? It would seem that I was taking a hiatus from their establishment as a form of “punishment”.

I am off to Addis Abeba for Gena; if you have any messages…

I am starting to see a guiding hand-that had been there all along- in my life. I’m gon be aight!


The pizza at Birutawit is real! (this is not the place I was talking about earlier)

yejebena buna

somebody ring the alarm there is tires on the roof

and just because I am going to my hometown

18 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. getere
    Jan 21, 2010 @ 19:04:23

    We welcome visitors. That has been my vision for this blog the whole time. If only Tibe stops writing cryptic posts, Betty stops reminiscing and I stop complaining about the fly that didn’t go out my bedroom window five years ago (it probably went out, but not through the one I opened for it, it chose another one which drove me up the wall) then we might have more visitors.


    • tibebe
      Jan 25, 2010 @ 14:52:27

      just wait til your offspring decides to follow the path you have not chose for them. you control freak! you have got to learn to let go and let all flies follow their heart’s wish.


  2. betty
    Jan 19, 2010 @ 23:43:06

    Hey papiye.. nice on the mr. Green and sometimes other colors…… speaking of names for food… Have you guys ever had Kornis… it is firfir and kitfo together…. something that addu, elz, bezi, yord and I used to do back then eas eat… firfir with french fries…..

    Hey I just rememberd how you guys abused me.. going to girgiro and taking me after buying me french fries sitibelu endalayachu….

    Hey you guys.. Meski is a friend of Selam’s… the one in Medical school Papy?.. hope you remember her.. and she knows TIye as much as Selam does…. she really enjoys tibe’s writings … so I hope it is ok I sent her the link to the blog to visit it from time to time….

    and what is the verdict.. should papy kill her?… in her defense.. she said you rock Papy…..and Tiye she said that you are awesome……


  3. meski de
    Jan 19, 2010 @ 08:43:02

    betiye i love ur conversations can u guys do it more often


  4. meski de
    Jan 19, 2010 @ 08:40:15

    tibe u rock!!!i dont wanna meddle in ur bissiness but u guys are just awesome.beti he wont kill me right!?


    • tibebe
      Jan 20, 2010 @ 15:20:24

      i guess i do rock 😛 and who knows? may be i will kill you. se bienvenida for the time being though.

      your avatar looks like the cyclops right after he discovered that odysseus and his band had gotten away.

      and the last two lines was me trying to sound intelligent.

      are you absolutely sure that you want to read us?


  5. betty
    Jan 17, 2010 @ 12:54:15

    lol.. Tiye…


  6. betty
    Jan 16, 2010 @ 15:53:56

    lol.. tiye..somehow I havenot yet got used to the taste of cockroach. may be we will try it some time… it is not meat…..what do you say to this offer?


    • tilish
      Jan 17, 2010 @ 11:24:44

      No thanks. It has meat. Would you stop insulting the cockroach already?


      • tibebe
        Jan 18, 2010 @ 13:50:02

        oh cockroach, yummy! there comes a time in everybody’s life when they will have to savor the juicy, white, sumptuous, delectable meat (meat?) of cockroaches. and your time will come, mr green,…. and sometimes other colors.


  7. tilish
    Jan 12, 2010 @ 20:59:34

    Why discriminate against the cockroach? Esus keman yansal?


  8. betty
    Jan 11, 2010 @ 22:11:29

    ok the computer is getting crazy and I couldnot even finish my comment….

    I miss you guys so much….


  9. betty
    Jan 11, 2010 @ 22:03:27

    I was laughing my behindd off when reading this… then Akil aid… Igzer yimarsh….

    Real nice papiye…
    It is gross that you found a fly in the asa firfir..(this is attempting to be one of them ferengi people)….

    serously though… I was at one of my aunts one time and real hungry and in the middle of the meal .. I found a coacroach… I took it out and continued eat


  10. tilish
    Jan 07, 2010 @ 19:55:43

    I like the pictures. Please post more.

    Stuff I don’t miss: visiting people in hopitals (even if the patient is sick and tired of visitors) and lekso medres. Now what do you make of those people who go to lekso with their buddies, they’re chatting and laughing all the way, but as soon as they get to the lekso bet ber endenesu yazene yelem. yazugn likekugn. Totally crap. We should have a “hazen fetagn” stick. It works just like one of those sticks that are used to test body temperature. You put one in your mouth and it turns green if you have been sad for the past few days and red otherwise. Those who are pretending to be sad can’t afford to maintain themselves in a sad state for a couple of days just to go to lekso. If they somehow do (such as by cutting their own fingers), then it means they care enough about the family so it makes sense to let them in nevertheless. Now your first thought would be to put one “fetagn” right at the lekso bet ber. Right? Wrong. The problem is you get people who are sad right when somebody dies. Then they quickly get over it but still stick around to play cards and love games with yegorebet lijoch. So “fetagn” should regularly survey the compound for “hazen bis” sewoch. Somewhere in 2100 we will have an automatic tester that beeps on you whenever your sadness level drops below the threshold. But seriously. I wish lekso was simply a one day event. It’s good for everyone that way.


    • tibebe
      Jan 18, 2010 @ 13:55:29

      some eateries in addis abeba serve foods with interesting amharic names that draw on the character and the upbringing 🙂 of the food and the ingredients that were used to make the food. examples as they come to me. and maybe they won’t .


    • tibebe
      Jan 18, 2010 @ 15:12:30

      and those who failed the tests will be banned from any lekso (ketema weym kiflehager wisT) for an amount of time as fits their offense


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