I have received a lot of requests if I should continue the story that I wrote a few months ago.. Sorry to say I havent really found any time to write it but here it is.
For those of you who havent read the first part you can find it under the 12th January
I clenched my fist and decided not to give this lazy bald asshole the pleasure.
Simply closed my bag and he finally directed me to go down the stars to the immigration part where they were dealing with transfers and other things.
Now as he obviously knew where I should have gone then why the hell did he send me upstairs from the very first beginning?
Taking the steps down the stairs I saw this huge mass of people crowding in front of the office as their flight had been cancelled and they were rebooking the tickets or something else.
They were pushing and showing and the security guys just stood and watched not really bothered to sort out the situation.
Personally i was not to interested to stand in this que for a couple of hours and decided to walk around the crowd and knock on the door on the side of the office.
I felt how all the people’s eyes were glued on the Faranji who passed around them and knocked on the office door.
A woman in her late 20s opened and asked for my business.
I explained to her as calm as I could, not her fault that her colleague upstairs apparently believed that he was the brother of Mugabe and hence could do as he wanted with anyone who crossed his fat neck.
She told me to come in and sit down on a chair in the office, Faranji for the win!, and called to her colleague in the other terminal to come over and take my complaint for the ripped raincover of the bag.
While sitting in the office waiting, probably it took an hour for the guy to come, but I had got used to it. This is Africa, everything has its own time, no matter if you travel in a country with Muslims or Christians in Africa.
Time has its own circle and since Ethiopia has their own calendar with 13 months and their own time calculation, why should they be any different from the rest of Africa?
I was watching the crowd of people become smaller and smaller and lastly only a few people here and there who were trapped in the airport, either because they didn’t have the proper papers to enter Ethiopia or they had no money to pay the visa.
Now and then occasional passengers coming up to the office window to ask for information as their flight was delayed or something. A woman sitting, or rather half sleeping on my left seemed to be trapped as she had no papers to enter the country and no money for a new flight ticket out of the country.
A while later a small man came and took my report on the damage of my bag, it was only the raincover that had got a rip in it but still I found it essential to have it filed, I had 12 hours to kill so why not waste time on this trivial thing. He looked at my damage and asked me to fill in some papers and later told me that a reply would be produced within 2 weeks. Well Africa right? It took them 5 weeks to reply but in the end, and I was surprised, they paid me half of what I initially had bought the bag for a year earlier. It was just a rain cover!
The next problem I was facing was to check in for the next flight.
As I was “inside” the terminal security and didn’t officaly enter Ethiopia as I came from Djibouti and didn’t enter Ethiopia as I refused to pay for a new visa. And to check in for the flight I had to get into the country, meaning on the other side of the invisible border made out of offices and customs officers.
I told my store and asked the young man who had filed my baggage claim how I should fix this.
He looked at his watch and mentioned that the check-in wouldn’t start until about another 7 hours and asked me to come back to the office at a certain time and he would help me fix it.
I thanked him for his help and he disappeared between the offices through the invisible border.
Now I had just to kill an extra 7 hours until I could check in.
Dragged my feet up the escalators again to the top floor where I had been advised to go the first time by the bald man.
It was noon and no movement at all in the departure hall.
The monitors gossiped about all flights and transfers where happening in the evening time at this airport. All shops were closed except a small restaurant/coffee who had a TV hanging on the wall with loud volume on. A couple of men from different ethnicities, mainly Africans, were sitting around 3-4 tables with their eyes glues on the TV screen.
Not interesting for me.
So I start walking around the departure hall and window shop in the closed stores to get time to pass. Here and there, where possible, asian men, probably chinese, were lying and sleeping on the hard metal benches to pass the time for their flights further on.
Found an internet café and thought I could always waste some time, meaning a lot, in front of the screens. The café was empty, not even an employee was noticed.
Being Swedish as I am, I decided to sit down and wait, what else could I do?
After about 10min a young woman came out of a backdoor polishing her nails.
I ask to have a computer and she asked for the money, quite expensive actually, 10 USD for an hour.
What other choice did I have?
I paid and sat down behind a computer.
Oh boy.. Here we talk the good old 90s.
Someone had put syrup into the connection or was it just that in Ethiopia you can only get a slow or very slow connection?
Most of the sites I was not allowed to visit or I got kicked out of.
And this is what I paid for?
After 30min I had enough and pointed out to the girl who the connection was bad and I could not use it and managed to get back half of the money I had paid.
Only 6 hours left now.
Take another lap around the hall and end up sitting and watching a movie on the computer until I ran out of the last of the battery.
And of course there was no electrical plugs anywhere.
Only 4½ hours left now.
I ended up in the small restaurant/coffee who had the TV hanging on the wall with loud volume on.
of course another football match was on.
I ordered pasta as I was becoming a bit hungry and lunch would be nice to have and I still had some Ethiopian currency I needed to get rid of as you can not exit the country with more than 100 Birr.
Some 450 was laying in my pocket. Another 150 in my backpack in different coins and notes for my collecting friends back at work.
I was risking it but at the same time, I was leaving the country.
The pasta came and I munched it down and looking at the TV screen with the other morons and hated myself for watching the football.
Nothing else to do.
Once eaten and got bored watching the TV I started my walk around again.
I ended up by the Internet café again that I had left some hour ago.
But it was another girl there now so I approached her and asked for the price.
Same as before and I asked her if the speed was any good as it wasnt allowing me to access some pages before. She said it was good and asked for the money.
I asked if I could check first if i could log in and if it worked I would pay. The answer was no.
I asked if I could get the money back if it didn’t work as last time. The answer was no.
I was baffled by this and felt that this was one of the exact reasons why I had started to get irritated by these people against my better judgement.
This was a catch 22 face and decided against my better judgement and paid to have some connection.
However this time I sat down at another computer and it worked amazingly.
Time passed by and I found myself out of my paid time hour and didn’t wanna pay anymore money.
Now I was in the hunt for socket to charge my computer.
I found a small stall that was branded with the Ethiopian Airlines logo and looked like some form of information desk.
I opened the door and found an electrical plug. JOY!
Opened the door and plugged in and hid the cable along the door and into my bag which I was leaning against the stall.
Trying not to get caught as an electricity theivfe.
At the same time I don’t wanna leave my bag just there unattended so I started leaning against the desk watching people pass.
After some 30min a woman came towards me and I feared the worst.
Yup – she opened the door and got into the stall but she didn’t notice my electricity thieving and I just smiled at her but stopped leaning against the desk but still I couldn’t leave my bag.
After a few minutes she started to look at me as I was standing close to the stall and smiled at me, I smiled back trying to look like I was minding my own business.
– Can I help you? she asked.
– No I’m fine, thank you, I replied and smiled even bigger.
I needed to get my computer charged for a longer time.
As I was hanging out by the information desk, actually by the side of it, several people started coming up to me asking for different gates.
In the beginning I just told them to ask the people working there and pointed to the woman.
She was basically working her butt off answering all questions about directions and so on, and I can say that her butt was not small at all.
Sometimes small queues built up in front of her little stall and people came in here and there trying to cut in to have a quick answer.
It was her job but as I was stealing electricity from her company, without her or their consent or knowledge, I managed to answer some questions to passengers when they started to ask me when they had tried to cut in and she had told them to wait in line.
I only answered those question that I had heard her answers to previously, like gate numbers and where the toilets were situated.
She abandoned her post after about two hours and I saw my chance to plug out from the socket without being noticed.
It was in time to get down to the office again to get to the check-in counter as the man had promised.
The woman behind the desk recognized me, was it because I was the only “big” faranji there?, and let me into the office.
She called the guy and he came after a while to pick me up.
As he accompanied me through the invisible border on back alleys between the offices we were chatting a bit and he was quite friendly and curious of what I was doing there.
After my check-in, meaning that the guy just walked up to the que of waiting people and just handed over my passport to have me checked in without waiting in line, great service I must add.
After this he accompanied me back to the departure hall.
I said thank you and we parted ways and I once again walked the stairs up to the hall.
Some 60min later I boarded the flight and the trip homeward started again..