Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia - Coffee, tea or...visa hell...

The days here in Addis start at about 900. I usually walk down to my favourite coffee house Cafe Tomoca. A pretty classy joint, Tomoca is based on an Italian cafe: stand up counters, and dark wood paneling. It seems to be a favourite of Addis business men as well. They gather at the counters, ignoring the ceiling mounted TV blaring out BBC world. Instead, they partake in hugely animated discussions, with frequent outbursts erupting around the small room. The waiter brings me my macchiato and cake. A good way to start the day, especially today.

How I wished the predicament I'm in was an April fool's Joke. First, the good news. I'm topped up with enough USD to get me through the Sudan (knock on wood). I made the transaction with Brittany last night. I'm taking the USD she got on the black market off her hands at the black market rate. Slightly expensive, but I just want this problem to go away.

On the subject of Brittany, she planted seeds of doubt in my mind. I asked for a 14 day visa. My understanding is that the black man said the visa was valid for 14 days and 14 days thereafter in Sudan. Brittany believed that I had 14 days from Addis to the Egyptian border at Wadi Halfa.

I'm going to have to clarify this bone of contention. Soon.

I went out with the girls (Louise, Emily, and Brittany, of course) from the Baro last night. Had dinner at the Khayyam Restaurant, serving Ethiopian/Arab dishes. That was fun. Afterwards we went to a bar for drinks. Hey they're kinda fun. Louise, a young English woman, seemed to be quite proper but with an edge. A fun edge. At times she would say the most outrageous, as she calls it - random, things that just cracked me up totally. Ahhh, the exuberance of youth... Suffice to say, we didn't get home till the wee hours...

Out of Canuckistan: A travel blog, Apr 1/07
Buy Bubba a Beer Now!

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