I've tried to update my blog many times in Ethiopia but this is the first time I've been able to. There is only electricity for three days a week generally. Only major cities have internet access. The internet access is very bad as well.
I'm safe and doing well. I'm in a city called Awassa. It's a really nice place about 500km from the border to Kenya. The plan is to push hard and cross the border into Kenya.
Ethiopia has a reputation for being a hard place to cycle. That's been true. But it has a lot of charm also. For the last two weeks no child has thrown a rock at me. The adults are great. The food is tasty. The cafes are fantastic.
Will block more later.
Sunday, June 8, 2008
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Yay! You're OK! We were starting to get worried...
Glad to hear things are going good and you are staying safe.
Great to see you're still at it! Bon voyage!
So whilst reading the line about no child throwing rocks at you for two weeks, I remembered a great story that I think you would enjoy. It doesn't involve rocks, but children may or may not have been involved. So it was a sunny afternoon in downtown Winnipeg, a warm breeze lightly tousling my hair about as I walked to work. This detail doesn't actually matter, but I thought I would include it to reaffirm how wonderful Winnipeg is. Now I wasn't walking briskly like I normally did, a detail that could, in fact have contributed to the outcome of the event. For what happened next required timing of exact calculations, or just a whole lot of luck. On any other day, I would be racing to work, running late due to an endless list of possibilities, anything from napping to cleaning to napping to cooking to nappping to mere procrastination (I nap a lot). But today, TODAY, I was on the ball, sauntering in the sun, having left early, enjoying my jaunt to work on this lovely day. I was chatting on my cell phone with my friend, Patrick, a cop in Toronto. All of a sudden, BANG! my cell phone is lying on the ground as I tremble beside it. My left temple is throbbing and my hand is covered with an icky substance. I look around and see nothing out of the ordinary, other than a suspicious car speeding away some fifty feet ahead of me. I could hear Patrick yelling from my phone that I now noticed was also covered with the slimy film my hand shared. Even though I was stunned, I managed to pull myself together long enough to analyze what just occurred. Apparently, I had just been the victim of an egging. That's right, those kids in the now long gone car had thrown an egg at me while they drove past, smacking me upside the head. Now I don't know for sure if they were kids or not because I never did see them. But I think the story might actually be funnier if they were a car-full of seniors. I guess we'll never know the proper level of hilarity for this story. So my immediate thought is that it was a targeted attack, likely someone from my "Making it Right" list that I just hadn't remedied yet, but I then decided it would be funnier from a complete stranger. I turned around and walked home (crying - shocker, I know), covered in raw egg. I had no idea how badly an egg hurt when hurled from a moving car then broken against one's skull. I think my cell phone took the brunt of the impact, so I wasn't too concerned about brain damage. I cleaned myself (and my phone) up, dried my tears (which were a combination of disbelief, pain, embarrassment, and laughter), then walked very cautiously - yet briskly, 'cause I'm now late - back to work. I called Patrick back to explain what happened, and he was like, "What was the plate number? I'll run it." Nah, even if I had thought to peer at a speeding car immediately following a massive blow to the head, I think it's funnier that they can tell their story to their friends back at the nursing home. Moral of the story: never leave early for work.
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