Enjoying injera

For a bit of time off the island, Matt and I headed to Ethiopia and South Africa. It was an amazing experience. If you get the chance to visit either country… Go!

Ethiopia was definitely not as well set up for tourists, but that being said they have an incredible history and some truly amazing churches. We hit Bahir Dar, Gondar, and Lalibella. The highlight was the rock churches of Lalibella and the most interesting thing about them is that they are almost all interconnected so you end up going through a series of passageways in the tunnels including one which is about 500 feet in pitch darkness. Towards the end of the trip I got a bit sick and have the dubious honor of having thrown up in two Ethiopian airports. It explains why I look a bit green in a few of the pictures.

I think my favorite thing about Ethiopia is that all of the churches are still in use and we were there during a minor festival so all throughout the day we saw priests in and out of the churches and people breaking their fast. People attending church wear all white so it is really quite stunning. PS If you have to pick a religion based solely on fasting Ethiopian Orthodox is the way to go. You can’t eat from the morning until 3 and that after that you can only eat vegetarian. As fasts go, it isn’t too challenging.

Another odd connection is Italian architecture. When we were living in Albania, people always mentioned that the cities were built by the Italians and to be honest I never saw it. Until I visited Bahir Dar. Our guide mentioned the Italian influence and suddenly I flashed back to Albania. I could have been standing at the central square of Kavaje or Durres. An unexpected connection.

Check out the pictures and stay tuned for South Africa!


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