in the village
was a market to be visited in Dimeka and several tribes along the
way including the Tsamay (SAH my), Bane (BAH nah), and Hamer (HAH
mer) people. The route we took was really a bush path. But, lots of
people were out walking.
My guide said the Hamar were the most beautiful people in the tour.
It was hard to argue the point. Hamer women wore animal skins ornamented
with cowry shells. They also wore aluminum bracelets and necklaces.
Most women had a similar hairstyle that was made up of millions of
tight ringlets that looked sort of like a traditional Dutch boy's
haircut. A few women used soil and butter to give their hair a wet,
red, mud effect. There appeared to be no rules for men's fashion.
Some dressed in Western clothes (unfortunately) but many had wrap
around cloth or animal skin skirts. As far as their heads were concerned,
anything seemed to be fair game. Many people had four earrings per
ear. Some heads had the front half shaved and the back half in corn
rows. There were feathers added to hair designs that needed no further
decoration. Some heads looked like some sort of mud was caked on and
then painted. I was in portrait paradise with a sensory overload of
color and culture.
when we pulled into our campsite, there were at least fifteen Hamer
boys who watched our arrival. Hanging out at the camp was a good way
to make some birr from tourists. Masey gave me a walking tour of a
nearby village. xIt was every bit as beautiful as the Hamer market
and a lot more peaceful.
were well taken care of at the camp. When I went to wash up and shave
along a dried up river, one boy insisted he came along to pour water
over my head and feet. In addition, dishes were washed, tents were
assembled, and camp was guarded by the boys.