Ethiopian Drought Area, 1973: One Word Photo Challenge

                                                          Ethiopian Drought Area, 1973

The below pictures were taken in the Bati market of Ethiopia in the middle of the drought area. Here highland farmers met the lowland nomadic traders to exchange food for camel dung or other commodities.

daily life color069 daily life color070 daily life color065 (1) daily life color067The woman in back is cornrowing the hair of the woman in front.  Look at how finely plaited it is. The two sides of her hair contain the same amount of hair!

daily life color071

I believe this village was Dessi. We drove for two days through the drought area on local bus to get here.  I’ve talked about that trip HERE.

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In the village we were going to, women walked for 3 hours with these heavy clay jars on their backs to get water. This was the water we drank and cooked and bathed with.  Needless to say, we were very sparing of water usage.  When I later went back and lived in that village for a month, for my once-weekly bath, I used a small pitcher of water, poured in a meager stream over my head as I stood in a small basin. A bit of water, shampoo and soap, and then the rest of the water to rinse off. I’m sure my drainage water was then used for something. Probably to settle the dust on the dirt floor or to clean with. Hopefully, not for that night’s soup.

11 thoughts on “Ethiopian Drought Area, 1973: One Word Photo Challenge

  1. lifelessons Post author

    I wish I could say it has, but it really hasn’t. We had frequent water outages when I first moved to Mexico, and that certainly did, but the moment the water comes on again, I have a short memory.


    1. lifelessons Post author

      It was really the first I’d known of the drought. It wasn’t much talked about on international news. Different countries were sending aid, including the U.S., but unless they came to personally supervise the distribution of food, it wasn’t getting to the people who needed it.

      Liked by 1 person

        1. lifelessons Post author

          My reply to you went on for so long that I’m actually publishing it on my blog today. See it there along with a link to your blog and the article you generously sent to me. The post is entitled “Leaves in a Dry Wind.” Thanks, Oromian Economist!


  2. Pingback: One Word Photo Challenge: Wildfire | Jennifer Nichole Wells

  3. lifelessons Post author

    To: Oromian Economist. Thank you so much for your comment and the article you sent. In replying to your comment, I went on for so long that I’ve decided to publish my reply to you on my blog. I have entitled it “Leaves in the Wind.” I have linked it to both your blog and the Huffington Post link you gave me to enable readers of my blog to read the article you generously shared with me. It has been forty years since I left Ethiopia and my memory is most likely faulty on some of the chronology, but I hope my essay is a truthful account of what I experienced during that year leading up to and briefly following the coup. The events describing Selassie’s arrest were as they were relayed to me by Andu Alem Tamirat in 1974 or 75, after I had returned to the U.S.


  4. Pingback: Leaves in a Dry Wind | lifelessons – a blog by Judy Dykstra-Brown

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