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May 2008 - Celebrating Eritrea's 17th Independence Day
 
 

 

Keren Eritrea - May 29 2008 Festival of Mariam Dearit 

 

I make sure to wake up in time, so I can have breakfast and start the three kilometer walk to Marian Dearit at 8:00 in the morning, so I will be in time for the procession.

The heat is already uncomfortable. Hundreds of people walk in one direction to witness the festival. Small Toyota mini busses serve as public transport for two Nakfa only. But they are so crowded that I prefer to walk.

I meet a lot of people that know me by now. Together we walk the dusty streets just outside the center of Keren. We arrive well in time to witness the whole ceremony.

More than once I am invited to sit down to join a coffee ceremony. Soft drinks and water are sold just outside the compound. Others sell candles and religious kitsch.

I walk through the crowd for a few hours, enjoying the shade of the nim trees. A young girl is coming towards me. She want to invite me to the picnic of class 7c of the St. Joseph School of Keren Lalay.

We make photo's with their camera. Unfortunately they spoil the film, opening the camera before rewinding it. I make some pictures with my camera, and promise to send them the pictures.

Around 15:00 the party is over and most of the people return to their homes. When I see an overloaded group of youngsters, I join them and offer to help them to carry their stuff. The gesture is much appreciated. 

Procession around the shrine of the Holy Mary of Mariam Dearit - Keren.

Procession around the shrine of the Holy Mary of Mariam Dearit - Keren.

Procession around the shrine of the Holy Mary of Mariam Dearit - Keren.

Procession around the shrine of the Holy Mary of Mariam Dearit - Keren.

Procession around the shrine of the Holy Mary of Mariam Dearit - Keren.

Procession around the shrine of the Holy Mary of Mariam Dearit - Keren.

Procession around the shrine of the Holy Mary of Mariam Dearit - Keren.

Procession around the shrine of the Holy Mary of Mariam Dearit - Keren.

Procession around the shrine of the Holy Mary of Mariam Dearit - Keren.

Procession around the shrine of the Holy Mary of Mariam Dearit - Keren.

Procession around the shrine of the Holy Mary of Mariam Dearit - Keren.

Procession around the shrine of the Holy Mary of Mariam Dearit - Keren.

Small scale trade at the festival of Mariam Dearit - Keren Eritrea.

Small scale trade at the festival of Mariam Dearit - Keren Eritrea.

The chapel of Mariam Dearit - Keren Eritrea.

The chapel of Mariam Dearit - Keren Eritrea.

People gathered around the baobab tree with the shrine of the Holy Mary - Festival of Mariam Dearit - Keren Eritrea.

People gathered around the baobab tree with the shrine of the Holy Mary 
Festival of Mariam Dearit - Keren Eritrea.

Picnic with an Eritrean family, Festival of Mariam Dearit - Keren Eritrea.

Picnic with an Eritrean family, Festival of Mariam Dearit - Keren Eritrea.

Students of class 7c of the St. Josephs School in Keren Lalay.

Students of class 7c of the St. Josephs School in Keren Lalay.

The statue of the Holy Mary - Festival of Mariam Dearit Keren Eritrea.

The statue of the Holy Mary - Festival of Mariam Dearit Keren Eritrea.

 
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