After breakfast some of us went for a walk to the Ethiopian Ethnological Museum. On the way to the museum Michelle spotted a traditional Ethiopian dress which she really liked and purchased. Ellen also made a purchase of a colourful umbrella as we seen people using them in Ethiopian churches.
The museum is situated at the beautiful campus of the Addis Ababa university and we were positively surprised by the cheap entrance fee of 50 Birr (2.90 USD) and the high quality of the museum. It basically explains the different tribes living in Ethiopia and their life cycle from birth to death. Since the building of the museum used to be home of a monarch the exhibit also showed his bedroom and bathroom.
After lunch I had Skype conversations with some of my friends including Michael who just arrived back to Germany from a business school residency and a vacation in China.
In the evening we received a refund from the kitty for our journey from Gondar to Addis Ababa amounting 65 USD and 200 Birr (11.8 USD) per person. The principle of the kitty is simple to explain. For each piece of the journey every traveller puts in the same amount of money into a joint fund of money. For example the kitty payment for the 21 day travel between Gondar and Addis Ababa amounted to 400 USD. The kitty is then used to pay for hotels, camping fees, entrance fees, local guides and shopping for food done by the cocking groups. The amount of kitty to be paid is strongly related to local prices at the time of travel, e.g. if the price of a hotel rises more money is consumed. The money which wasn’t used doesn’t flow into the pockets of the tour operator but directly back to the travellers. Therefore, the system is very transparent and fair.
At 6pm we went out for a group dinner to a Mexican restaurant. We used the dinner to say goodbye to three travellers and welcome to two new ones from The Netherlands. Tomorrow we’re expecting two more travellers from Scandinavia joining us on our journey to Nairobi. In total the number of traveller is now rising from 18 to 19 people.