Date: 6th November 08
Location: Awassa, Ethiopia
Weather: Scattered showers and thunder, 34°c in the sun, cold at night
Status: Trying desperately to get Kee’s truck running again…
Up at 7am to the sound of rain on the tent, never a good sound but within a few minutes it had stopped and the sun came out to dry the tent out. Had a bite of breakfast including Ammon’s pancakes which was a turn up for the books once we’d got around the rotten eggs in the fresh box.
Spent the morning changing one of the rear shock absorber top mounts which had disintegrated on the road through the north of Kenya, then took the Colonel to the local car wash and had all of the mud pressure washed off from the underneath so I could give him a good check over after the mental corrugations of the last few days.
Kees had headed off to fid a local garage who could rectify the problems he was having with his truck, a little self-diagnosis seems to point to the clutch and a major problem with the friction plate. He returned on his bike with Marconi who runs the camp and who has helped him out with the language problem, the mechanic arrived later in the afternoon to remove the old one and try to locate a replacement somewhere in this town, failing that a trip to the capital Addis Ababa would be in the order of the day to collect one ourselves.
Bre, Savannah, Kees and I headed out in the evening to the city centre to the National Hotel where we decided to try the local cuisine. Not being able to read the menu even we consulted the Bradt guide and ordered wat, a mixture of boiled meat usually ox or mutton with onions or peppers served with a hot sauce and all neatly piled in the centre of injera – a traditional large pancake shaped substance made from tef, a nutty tasting grain unique to Ethiopia. The dough is fermented for up to three days before it is cooked giving it a foam rubber texture and a slightly sour taste! Everything tastes ok with chilli sauce on it though!
We ventured further up the street for pastry and strong Ethiopian coffee for dessert and then back to the camp for bed as I have to drive Kees to the capital tomorrow if we hear nothing back from the garage first thing.
End of day location: Awassa, Ethiopia
Distance covered: 10kms