Ethiopia Participant Travel I do not enjoy being ignored, and even worst is mockery; there is a language gap between Ethiopia people and me. Because I do not speak the Amharic language, I am not able to participate well in this country.
I am an outsider; I will forever be the foreigner unless I learn the Amharic language. This is not a difficult people, they do accept me.
At first, I thought English was the language of business here, however, now I realize Ahmaric is the language of business. English if of little value in the country of Ethiopia, more of status or fashion statement, and a way to demonstrate a person is clever. English has little functional need in this country.
Hmm, I can see I need to refine my definition of the “Language of Business.”
--------------------------------- Ziway, Ethiopia Three to Four Hours South of Addis, Ababa East Africa Wednesday, March 11, 2009 Travel Journal ---------------------------------
Bottom line, I am not prepared now to learn the Amharic language, I do not have a dictionary, I did not know I needed one.
Hmm, again, I am confusing the issue, Ethiopia is an extremely easy country so far, and I believe this country has to be one of the simplest countries on the planet to travel.
I can get transportation and a room with zero problems and because the average room is less than 10 Dollars, there is almost never a budget problem. I am in the Brothers Hotel here in Ziway, a great room for 5 US. Dollars and 50 cents, this is 55 Birr.
I cannot participate in the country, I can only stand back and look at people. Yes, I can find a man who wishes to sell me something or wishes to ask me never ending silly questions without a true meeting of the minds.
To participate I need to meet these people half way and learn Ahmaric, I enjoy learning about the people of a country, and I do not enjoy looking at them as a tourist attraction. It feels impolite to treat humans as a tourist attraction, if I cannot participate in their lives, have a conversation of substance, and then I feel impolite.
The reverse is true; the people here cannot talk with me, therefore after a very short time the situation evolves to mockery. More or less, we must just laugh it off, we do not understand each other, so we can make fun of each other, we can laugh, or we can leave.
I am not sure I have made it clear, this is like a small rock desert here, and there is a dusty hot and unfriendly patch of earth. It may be more comfortable at other times of the year, but right now, it is a dust bowl.
I have about zero desire to sit around learning a language with people living in a dust bowl. Everyone says the north of the country is better, and I think they are correct.