42. Selam! Tibebe ebalalehu; leba negn.

I try not to visit other blogs regularly lest my posts start to resemble those written by bloggers whose steelo I take a liking to. True, I often use the random redirection feature of WordPress to compare blog stats but often that is about it. But no matter how I try to appear original, I know somebody out there has already said what I so pompously post as my latest entry. The last statement’s inspiration, I mooched off this lady’s blog . I read a few of her posts and ……. humbling and intimidating! Some people sure have a picturesque way of writing. 

Sami saw the entry before last and kind of suggested that the brilliant idea about “humpers without borders” was his. I remember discussing it with him, as I do some of the material up in this with some people, but I am not sure who cosigned with whom. So sue me, Sami! ( by the way he has told me that next week , he is going to leave for Bale Mountains’ National Park to work on his project entitled ”Running with the Red Wolves”; good luck man!) And may this serve as a disclaimer to anyone and everyone, in the past present or future-if it looks like that I have stolen your idea/s, it is probably because I have, knowingly/unknowingly. Deal with it! 

Bright ideas are neither created nor destroyed; they are just thought some brain else and posted some blog else. 

Now that we have got that little detail out of the way, I can finally write about the things I saw and heard.  I visited an exhibition that showcases the history of The Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahido Church. What I liked the most was the guides –they know their stuff. There was plenty of interesting things to see but without those fellows the 2hrs+ affair would have taken its toll on me. 

I attended the Ibero-American film festival; saw five films –four in Spanish one in Portuguese -all with subtitles—. I used to think Venezuela was all about beauty queens, oil resources and Hugo Chavez. Tocar y luchar (to play and to fight) has added a fourth dimension to that perception. In almost every community throughout the country there are orchestras composed of people who grow up learning music from as little as four years old. One of the founders of the scheme said “… An orchestra is the only place where people come together with the sole purpose of agreeing with each other. ….”  Midway through the documentary, I was musing if the same could happen in Ethiopia. There is an undertone of a consensus in many circles and rectangles that in groups Ethiopians function badly or not at all except in comer y luchar (to eat and to fight).  But the “sad” reality is that we can not have wars all the time and if “ho blen lelimat bandinet ketenesan”, then we would be insanely and self–absorbedly rich that we won’t have to eat together nomore. Moreover, I feel little is being done to bring about a national psyche while there is too much exertion on constituents.  

The millennium might just be a godsend in that respect but we need more to make us feel that we are part of this unique assembly of people called Ethiopians. Seeing the film like I have seen it, one would probably have to agree what better way to instill a sense of belongingness from an early age than music. It may seem an expensive undertaking given our always to blame poverty, but what isn’t?

 Memorable people from the other films- two old guys from soldados de Salamis (the soldiers of Salamis) and the forest (a selva)… can’t a guy  forget?  I have to say eneza shimagilewoch have aged full of delightful cynicism; and one of them hardly speaks!   

Memorable scene, hands or rather hoofs down- the one where this guy has intercourse with a horse. The part of the violated equine was played by a stunt horse. 

 Annoyance – the assholes at the back that talked and giggled through two films; and I sat there aching for the day when I shall finally flip out on people like them, speeding taxi drivers inclusive. 

And now…the irony section: 

A neon sign inside a bakery reads”Behulet shih Ethiopia kealem mahibereseb gar yalatin wodagignet tagolebitalech!” From bread point of view, our relationship with the international community had for the most part been based on them giving us wheat or money to buy/produce it with. And from bread point of view, I rather we did not strengthen our cooperation with other folks.   

 The intro to “gebi” (a radio programme on tax) is/used to be?  Usher’s nice and slow. It would go “…. you know I am coming over right? ……. wear that little thing I like …..”  A bid to make tax sound romantic? 

 Gotta split! It is the idea police! 

 One

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