The villages of Danakil

Our journey to the salt mines, and Erta Ale volcano, took us through a few villages. My understanding was that these were mixed Tigre/ Afar villages. They are very conservative, and the locals didn’t always appreciate our roaming around shooting photos. Sometimes there was tension in the air, but when one of the tourists, an Israeli, forgot his backpack at one village, it was still there for him days later when we returned. All the contents were intact.
I can’t remember the names of these villages, but here are some samples of the scenes, and people, of this leg of my journey:
It’s very common, in this part of the world, for men (but never for women) to carry a stick, if they’re tending livestock, over their shoulders. If they have a gun, it’s carried in the same fashion, as we see here:
In one area we stopped in, it’s customary to sharpen one’s teeth, as we see on this girl:
At one point, when we stopped to rest and take photos, we were accosted by a group of young men begging for bottled water. We were told that they’re road workers, and that their employer gives them water – but that they prefer bottled water. They all had crosses carved into their foreheads. They were more interested in water than in getting their photos taken, so this was the best I could do:
On the way to Erta Ale, we encountered a dust storm. This is where we stopped, for lunch, during that storm:
It was miserable, and here’s the “shelter” we used for lunch:
The village once had a medical clinic, but this is all that’s left of it:
Here’s a local guide/militiaman at the base of Erta Ale:
As we passed through vast volcanic areas, we could see isolated huts in the distance. We wondered how they survive in such a harsh environment, and how they get water:

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4 Responses to The villages of Danakil

  1. missattempts says:

    Have the Islamic swine made headway there? Sooner or later, they

    • jewamongyou says:

      Christians and Muslims have lived together in these villages for a long time. I spent my birthday in a guesthouse in one of these villages. It’s owned by a Muslim family, but they had no problem letting me share my bottle of Canadian whiskey with the other tourists; they even brought us cups. The morning calls for prayer, which went on for a long time, bothered a couple of the tourists; they said it was annoying. But these were Christian calls for prayer. Oddly enough, I didn’t hear any Muslim calls for prayer while I was there.

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