Asmara Eritrea - August 7th 2006
In a kiosk I buy the Eritrean Profile of
August 5. They actually printed the interview with this Dutch tourist! Nice
souvenir to show to family, friends and colleagues in Holland. The rest of
the day I spend to buy more souvenirs, visit family and friends, and to
With Gabriela, the maid of Gebrehiwot I
visit the cereal market. She will judge the teff, a type of grain used to
make injera. I will bring some kilo's back home, since my suitcase is
almost empty. I will leave most of most of the luggage in Eritrea, knowing
I will return in May 2007 and probably sooner.
teff is a small species of grain. It is considered to have an excellent amino acid composition.
It is very healthy, containing much calcium (even more than milk!), iron, protein
and fiber, boron, copper, phosphorus, and zinc. And it is not so easy to
find in Holland, or very expensive.
In a workshop next to the cereal market the
teff is purified, sieving it several times, and grinded. The flour is packed in
practical plastic bags, that I brought from Holland, to store it secure in my suitcase.
It will be a welcome souvenir for Mebrat.
After the shopping, I spent the afternoon
walking through Asmara, enjoying fresh fruit juices and other healthy
stuff (like Asmara beers), to be prepared for tomorrow's expedition: the
hike to the Debre Bizen Monastery, an ancient male-only monastery. It is
is one of Eritrea's most impressive and oldest Orthodox Christian
monasteries, on a mountaintop, perched high above Nefasit. The other ones, Hamm (near Senafe) and Debre Sina (near
Keren) are less accessible, and therefore the less popular historical
I have not forgotten my 2001 experience, when
I visited the monastery for the first time. Actually I was visiting
Nefasit and went up on impulse, misjudging both the climate and the
hardship of the 2,500 feet vertical ascent. This time I will be well
prepared for this energetic climb, taking my rest today, and leaving early
tomorrow, with a permit, water, oranges, and I will try to find a reliable
At the office of the Eritrean National
Blood Transfusion Service, I get the results of the tests on my blood.
Some of the medics remember me from the Expo and give a a warm welcome to
their institute, showing me some parts of the facilities and laboratories.
The tests were all okay, as I expected. "Will you donate your blood
the next time you will visit Eritrea? " they ask me. Of course I will
View over Asmara Eritrea.
Service Station - Mereb Street / Semaetat Avenue Asmara Eritrea.
Family Ayele fast food
restaurant - Warsay Avenue Asmara Eritrea.
Women cleaning the streets -
Airport Road Asmara Eritrea.
Ministry of Health -
Denden Street Asmara
IRGA building - Semaetat
Nacfa House - Mereb Street /
Tegadelti Street Asmara
Berhe Aiba Hotel - Airport
Road Asmara Eritrea.
Residential Complex - BDHO
Avenue Asmara Eritrea.
Cinema Croce Rossa - BDHO
Avenue Asmara Eritrea.