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Old 12-26-2010, 04:07 PM   #1171
Old_Lion
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Rugged Route to Bahir Dar continuing to Addis Abeba, Ethiopia




http://tinyurl.com/2ady6j4

From Addis Abeba to Arba Minch to Konso:
http://tinyurl.com/37weqhk

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Old 12-26-2010, 11:34 PM   #1172
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Ethiopian music videos

When we arrived in Addis Abeba there was a lot of good Ethiopian music playing from TV. Being tired of western pop and hiphop, the Ethiopian music videos do have a certain charm in them with the love for the countryside, purity, "home-grown" feeling and interesting choreography (try to perform those sharp dance movements yourself - not! )

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Old 12-27-2010, 12:50 AM   #1173
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That Ethiopian music video just killed me
I have always been fascinated by african music and african dances so do not hesitate to upload any amount of them.
THANK YOU!!

I have a question for you. How do you keep fit while travelling for so long? Do you do some exercises? Or you find it not to be a problem to be on the road for so long?

Greetings
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Old 12-27-2010, 12:19 PM   #1174
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A Small Donation Made.

Your images are stunning along with your wonderful story telling and awesome attitudes towards life...
Very inspiring to me, thank you both for making the huge effort and sacrifices it takes to share your life with us from the road.

Cheers!







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Old 12-27-2010, 08:21 PM   #1175
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South from Addis Abeba

We only stayed in Addis Abeba, the Ethiopian capital, long enough to get our Kenyan visas (normally they are available on arrival but we were planning on crossing the Ethiopia-Kenya border in a place where there is no border post, so we had to do it in advance). Just like other African cities we had seen so far, Addis was more like an overblown village, and not a really attractive one, so we did not linger.

Exiting the capital towards the south, having stopped at a fuel station we discovered that the rear brake had given up its work contract, so we proceeded a little more cautiously, relying on the front brake only. This is also where we recorded the lowest fuel consumption on our trip - the recent cruising on curvy mountain roads, with smooth accelerations and decelerations had only taken 4,2 liters per 100 km, which is not bad for a heavily loaded 12-year old big bike running on poor quality Ethiopian petrol. Not to mention the non-existant aerodynamics of the boxer GS. They've built them bikes good.



A tank in the fundamentally best and most humane position - abandoned and rusting.














Barrel warning.















Lake Abaya.




Arba Minch, a town near Lake Abaya, is the last official place to get petrol for the next 1000 kilometers or so if going south-west - after that one can only rely on petrol from a barrel in someone's backyard, if there is left any, and which of course is of dubious quality but nevertheless costs double the official price. So we filled the tank and an additional 10-litre jerry can that would normally give us autonomy of 800 kilometers or so, but the expected harsh conditions and a few unplanned detours would require us to replenish the supply "unofficially" along the way anyway. And as we found out soon, it isn't necessarily an easy task - in one village it took us nearly an hour before a jerrycan full of petrol could be collected from here and there.



A crowd gathers everywhere we stop.















Curious african men.








The further south-west, the rougher became the road, but we were clearly in Hamer territory as we kept on spotting people wearing nothing but goatskins and beads tending their livestock in the bush.



Decent gravel in Ethiopia.































Hamer men we met on the road.



Now we are getting closer to real Africa...
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Old 12-28-2010, 12:26 AM   #1176
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Love the close up pics of the tank barrel
........ how much does the petrol cost in US dollars/liter
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Old 12-28-2010, 05:29 AM   #1177
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The Hamer people, some 40 000 of them, are one of the many tribes in the Omo valley in South-Western Ethiopia. To get a closer look at them, we decided to visit their weekly market in the village of Dimeka - the Hamer people congregate to Dimeka to sell their produce, wares and livestock from near and far, and of course, their looks and attire are so distinctive and colourful that one would think it is some sort of costumed parade, not a regular market day. In fact, colourful beads and feathers (which men are even more fond of than women) are an everyday accessory, as well as rope-like hairstyle (acieved by applying mud) of the Hamer women. Interestingly, most of those features have nothing to do with rituals or social status - they're just for beauty. And to be honest, the Hamer people do look attractive.



The usual crowd around.















Christian girl who for some reason held Kariina's hand all the time.















Features in face like out of "Avatar" movie.















Portrait of a sweet African lady.















Local flora.















Building a house, African style.














Hamer women selling their stuff in Dimeka market.















Portrait of a Hamer man.















Hamer woman.

The further we go, the more interesting it gets...
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Old 12-28-2010, 07:11 AM   #1178
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quicktoys2 View Post
how much does the petrol cost in US dollars/liter
In populated and well equipped places (cities and towns) - 15 birr (0.9 USD).

But in periphery (rural and tribal areas) - usually around double the price.


Quote:
Originally Posted by yeuop View Post
I have a question for you. How do you keep fit while travelling for so long? Do you do some exercises? Or you find it not to be a problem to be on the road for so long?
Our weights have remained more or less the same - with me gaining a couple of kilos and Kariina losing equally. No training whatsoever - I guess the limited road diet and riding our pig-heavy fully loaded bike in extreme offroad does the trick, as well as trying to walk to all places within reasonable distance instead of riding or taking a taxi - when in mountaneous regions (North India, Pakistan), walking in oxygen poor environment up and downhill can be a real good exercise.

Actually, about exercise - when we have long (and especially consecutive) riding days, we try to do some 5-10 minutes of exercise in the evening and in the morning too. It really makes it easier to start on the next day - the body is not so stiff and does not tire so quickly.
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Old 12-28-2010, 07:32 AM   #1179
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Hamer People in Omo Valley, Ethiopia

Quote:
Originally Posted by tsiklonaut View Post
The Hamer people, some 40 000 of them, are one of the many tribes in the Omo valley in South-Western Ethiopia. To get a closer look at them, we decided to visit their weekly market in the village of Dimeka - the Hamer people congregate to Dimeka to sell their produce, wares and livestock from near and far, and of course, their looks and attire are so distinctive and colourful that one would think it is some sort of costumed parade, not a regular market day. In fact, colourful beads and feathers (which men are even more fond of than women) are an everyday accessory, as well as rope-like hairstyle (acieved by applying mud) of the Hamer women. Interestingly, most of those features have nothing to do with rituals or social status - they're just for beauty. And to be honest, the Hamer people do look attractive. snip - snip The further we go, the more interesting it gets...
Fascinating people whose culture is destined to vanish.

http://blogs.nationalgeographic.com/blogs/news/chiefeditor/2010/08/omo-river-dam-threatens-traditional-farmers.html

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iud33CfLai4&feature=player_embedded

Location: http://tinyurl.com/26mtfdw

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Old_Lion screwed with this post 12-28-2010 at 08:52 AM Reason: Hamer People in Omo Valley, Ethiopia
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Old 12-28-2010, 08:37 AM   #1180
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Old_Lion View Post
Fascinating people whose cultural is destined to vanish.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iud33CfLai4&feature=player_embedded
I'm afraid you are right. Soon they will have iPhones and Facebook too, it is inevitable, and no doubt those new cool things will seem better than the old ways. But then again, I am pretty sure they will keep putting on the show for tourists (just like the long-neck ladies in North-West Thailand) as they already are aware of the great potential of their ways and looks that work like a magnet for tourists looking for something exotic. In fact, the Ethiopian government is currently extending the tar road up to the tribal areas, so what must have been untouched ten years ago might be completely destroyed in another ten - because more tourists will go there, and more tourists means more money.
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Old 12-28-2010, 09:25 AM   #1181
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"A tank in the fundamentally best and most humane position - abandoned and rusting."
A sad monument indeed! I wonder where itīs made ? Russia most probably,maybe China, but a good guess could also be Germany, Sweden, USA or some other western state. Shamefull bussines and certainly a moral issue for us to contemplain.
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Old 12-28-2010, 03:07 PM   #1182
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tsiklonaut View Post
Actually, about exercise - when we have long (and especially consecutive) riding days, we try to do some 5-10 minutes of exercise in the evening and in the morning too. It really makes it easier to start on the next day - the body is not so stiff and does not tire so quickly.
Doing a number of long-distance days in a row is pretty strenuous all by itself.

Thanks for another great update!
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Old 12-28-2010, 03:22 PM   #1183
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Russian ZSU-23-4 (4 23mm cannons) anti-aircraft or anti-whatever...

Great report and save travels!
Quote:
Originally Posted by rednax View Post
"A tank in the fundamentally best and most humane position - abandoned and rusting."
A sad monument indeed! I wonder where itīs made ? Russia most probably,maybe China, but a good guess could also be Germany, Sweden, USA or some other western state. Shamefull bussines and certainly a moral issue for us to contemplain.
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Old 12-29-2010, 05:30 AM   #1184
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SCflyer View Post
Russian ZSU-23-4 (4 23mm cannons) anti-aircraft or anti-whatever...
Yep, ZSU-23-4 "Shilka" (aka "Sewing machine") radar guided anti-aircraft it seems.



Quote:
Originally Posted by rednax View Post
"A tank in the fundamentally best and most humane position - abandoned and rusting."
A sad monument indeed! I wonder where itīs made ? Russia most probably,maybe China, but a good guess could also be Germany, Sweden, USA or some other western state. Shamefull bussines and certainly a moral issue for us to contemplain.
This one's from Soviet Union which supported Ethiopia with the highest-tec equipment from bomber airplanes to tanks back then while Eritreans fought back with their own limited resources and with ultrabrave guerilla tactics (and basically beat the much bigger and a hell lot better equipped Ethiopian force!).

What is very scary is that more brand new tanks are pouring in on the trucks as we saw on the road coming down from the North, being passed by military convoys.

In fact Africa has been a major income for Western countries in terms of weaponry sales from past century till today. It's very easy to provoke a war in many parts of Africa - there's always tribal tension, so very-very little is needed in those parts to start a war, even if the UN is is involved in peace keeping. I.e. already with the current ongoing tensions between Eritrea and Ethiopia, any large weapons manufacturer Russia/USA/China can buy out a couple of high military heads from each side (maybe invest a couple of million $ for smart, unprovable provocations, incidents or border disputes) and when the action starts they get billions $ worth of revenue on weapons sales to each side - they will love it (the mega-giga $$$ in their pockets) and World media will love it (writing about the bad news, conflict, assaults, retreats, rapings, killings and bloody war - the best possible news for making headlines, increased sales numbers in any type of media), world's banks will love it (with both poor contries paying their loans and interests for decades, keeping their cash flowing and while taking additional loans to rebuild their torn-apart countries), UN will more-or-less love it (when the guns get emptied they step in as the heroes of peace making, ceasefire and negotiations). The war is almost like a win-win situation looking from the rest of the world viewpoint, since smaller scale wars are smart money making machines these days.

Talk about money being dirty...
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Old 12-29-2010, 05:30 AM   #1185
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Quote:
Originally Posted by timk519 View Post
Doing a number of long-distance days in a row is pretty strenuous all by itself.

Definitely. However, compared to the beginning of our trip, we have slowed down considerably - we ride less and spend more time in places that we like, getting a better picture of the local culture and enjoying ourselves more. Not that riding the bike is less enjoyable, but we are not pressed for time, and at this point it seems the balance between riding and lingering is quite right - we do just what we feel is right - if we feel like moving, we move, and if we don't, we don't.

I guess the first year on the road was more about getting into the pace, and maybe trying harder to make the right decisions. Not that we have some strict plan but to actually ride from the southern tip of the Americas to the northern tip of the Americas, some amount of self-discipline is required - otherwise it is easy to miss the couple of months long "windows" at each end suitable for motorcycling. Later on, as we happened to be in Australia during the onset of fierce summertime, and in Indonesia during the rainy season, we decided not to stress about the weather, ad rather enjoy what we have and to take it easy. So far this attitude has justified itself well.
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