Friday, March 21, 2008

Jinka - Key Afer - Turme, Omo Valley, Ethiopia - Another one bites the dust...

She can touch your lobes, but never your latinum.
- Farangi Rule of Acquisition #40.

Tariq, the coffee girl...
Another long, tiring, wacky day. They tend to be that way in Omo it seems. Our driver, John, came by at 8 this morning, and we were off to Turme (deep in Hamer territory) via Key Afer. It was not a good night's sleep. In addition to the pounding rain, there must have been a family of rodents in the ceiling above my room. A lot of rustling and scratching noises kept me awake. The saving grace, I guess, was a spectacular sunrise.

We managed to get to Key Afer with no problem. That was not until John suggested we stop for coffee in Key Afer. Passing through town, we got pulled over by a traffic cop because of a broken right signal light. One thing lead to another and John was hauled away for driving with an expired license. Sparing you the details, it took the rest of the morning to sort out the legalities. John couldn't pay the necessary bribe. So, instead he was punished with 10 days in prison, fined 500 birr, and, to top it off, the car was impounded. Pretty tough justice I thought. The only hope we had was to have Adi and Luis hitch back to Jinka and plead with the 4X4's bastard owner for a refund of our money.

Meantime, Antonio and I hunkered down at Tariq's (sp?) cafe in Key Afer. Tariq was one of the girls who developed an obsession with Luis the first time we were in Key Afer. She's a stunner. Very beautiful, eh. Despite her broken english, we managed to communicate. Hanging out with the guys 24/7, I really missed interacting with women. At age 20, Tariq journeyed down from Addis to make a better life. Addis in her eyes was a money hungry place (despite making a healthy profit with her coffee shop). She loved life in Key Afer. We cooked lunch and invited Tariq.

With the frequency of transport in Omo, we thought it would take Adi and Luis a long time to hitch back from Jinka, but they showed up at 4. Not only did they get our money back, they came back with a 4X4 ride with a couple of road construction workers as well. Maybe our luck had turned for the better. We said goodbye to Tariq.

The road to Turme was indeed torturous transecting numerous dried river beds. I can see why travel in rainy season is impossible. The road's only virtue was the constant stream of Hamer people walking along its side. The driver was pretty reckless to say the least. Tired and sore, we arrived in Turme, a sizable town, just after sunset.

Turme is located here: N04 58.189 E36 29.310

Out of Canuckistan: A travel blog, Mar 21/07
Buy Bubba a Beer Now!


Steve H. said...


bubba said...

you got that right, steve. i might post another photo later.