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May 2004 - Celebrating the
13th anniversary of Eritrea
 
 

Asmara Eritrea - May 30th 2004

 

Today is Sunday. Not much excitement in Asmara. Feshaye will make a long healthy walk to the center. I accompany him, telling about my adventures in Assab, his brother and the family of his brother. In the main street, Harnet Avenue, he shows me the directions to Cherhi bar and restaurant on top of a hill in the outskirts of Asmara. "just walk straight from here"".

After a two kilometers walk from the center I climb the hill to enjoy the view over Asmara. I make some pictures of the restaurant and its surroundings. When I ask if the bas is open at this hour, the answer is surprising: "This is a military place now". Afraid of the consequences (it is forbidden to make pictures of military objects), I resume my walk, away from this building, towards Via Jeddah.

In a small grocery store I order a Coke. A girl asks me where I'm from and offers me to show her village Mihram Chira, between Haz Haz and Acria. We walk for half an hour, climbing a hill to enjoy the views. She explains why most people do not want to be pictured. "If I don't know you, I'll have to be afraid that you will abuse the pictures. And there is nothing I can do to prevent it." Selam will go to her sister, so we take the number 10 bus to the center and go our own way.

It is hot, even for Asmara. I try to walk in the shade and visit a bar every hour. A boy is selling hot roasted peanuts for a Nakfa per cup. I buy a few cups and share them with the other guests. At the market I buy a dozen oranges. A few blocks further a girl says: "Please let me have your fruits". What would she mean (apart from referring to the oranges)?

People ask me what happened to my skin. Since my visit to Assab my skin is coming of and the sweating makes it worse. I have to tell them it is not a disease. It is the sun, "tzehaie" that created a map of the Dahlak Islands on both my arms.

At the bus station I buy a small toy for Elilta. She starts to like me. And I feel at home and at ease with Terhas, Feshaye and the children.

I recognize the second bus that accompanied us returning from Assab. And I meat Francesca, the Italian journalist that was in the pane to Assab. We walk through the center of Asmara and exchange experiences and have some drinks.

Francesca has her own appointment, so I finish the day in the Selas Bar, trying to catch Lem Lem and Freweini with my camera. I have no succes

 

Mosque Via Jeddah - Asmara Eritrea.

Mosque Via Jeddah - Asmara Eritrea.

Bus station of the Keren Busses - Asmara Eritrea.

Bus station of the Keren buses - Asmara Eritrea.

Wall painting - Asmara Eritrea.

Wall painting - Asmara Eritrea.

Decorated shop window - Asmara Eritrea.

Decorated shop window - Asmara Eritrea.

Kidane Meheret, Oriental Christian Church - Asmara Eritrea.

Kidane Meheret, Oriental Christian Church - Asmara Eritrea.

Post office - Asmara Eritrea.

Post office - Asmara Eritrea.

Interior of the Catholic Cathedral - Asmara Eritrea.

Interior of the Catholic Cathedral - Asmara Eritrea.

Berhe shoe shop - Asmara Eritrea.

Berhe shoe shop - Asmara Eritrea.

Bar Amanuel - Asmara Eritrea.

Bar Amanuel - Asmara Eritrea.

Asmara Stout beer - Selas Bar Asmara.

Asmara Stout beer - Selas Bar Asmara.

 

 
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