Early on Thursday, a week before the Easter Holiday, the journalist crew of Ethiopian Press Agency (EPA) deployed to cover in their reportages the sociopolitical-and-economic activities as well as investment and tourism development of Tigray State woke up at daybreak.
The development of industrial parks, economic activities in the state, peace and stability were top on their agenda.
This writer was among the crew. He affords us a window into the travel as follows.
On the eve of our departure day, our driver crunched the number of each crew members and informed us that 6:30 is the time to depart from the EPA Headquarter at Arat Killo.
Except one reporter, most of us were punctual. We had to pick him from around Summit-Safari, vicinity in the north eastern part of Addis Ababa. Then, we pierced through Legetafo- Legdadi, at the outskirt of Addis Ababa same direction.
We left Addis Ababa before the sunrise. After a short drive, we caught the main way that leads to the northern part of the country (Amhara, Tigray and parts of Afar states) crossing by Legedadi. Sandafa is positioned next, a small and confined town in the Oromia Special Zone.
Though I was comfortable to it, with his full energy, the driver was about to fly the car. However, one among us has polygenic disorder. “Let us stop at Sandafa for a breakfast,” he said. I was about to complain but restrained myself. I reflected I must also be concerned about others’ illness.
Then, we drove through Beki, another small town in the main way. After that Debre-Berhan greeted us. This town is relatively the biggest one in the way north out Addis Ababa with high concentration of brewing factories, manufacturing industries, Public and private universities, colleges and a recently inaugurated industrial park.
At the exit of Debre Berhan, there is a small checking station. The driver showed the police officers pass letter and we left the area fast.
After Debre Berhan is Tarma Ber. Next, we had to face a foggy challenge before we reach Debre Sina. The administrative center of both Debre Berhan and Debre Cina is in the Amhara State. At that point in time we beheld a spectacular view. We came across chained mountains completely enveloped by fogs.
It seems that the boundaries of the sky and the land seemed blurred.
As opposed to the entire weather in Ethiopia, it is characterized by a biting cold. That day it was very dark and astonishing. The driver was grappling with his wheels to pass through. He lit a long distance flash. To our surprise nothing could be visible.
Vehicles coming from the opposite side were not noticeable. It proved the exact place for thrill seekers or explorers of challenges. No doubt, it obligates prudential driving. Atop the chained mountains, I felt I drew neigh to God, the Almighty. For me it was an extremely cold, foggy, dark and cloudy place ever. Finally, to avoid accident, the driver decided to stop the vehicle when the safest time presents itself. A train of clouds were running in one direction. So, we kept our vehicle closed.
After a while, slowly the driver set out to confront the fogy challenge. He drove past Chirameda, Asfachew, to head to Shiwarobit, Jewha, then Senbete and finally Attaye. We stopped at Attaye for security checking. Security men were patrolling the small town.
The same federal and Special Forces officer were patrolling the two village towns of Karakore and Kemise boosting the security confidence of commuters that use the avenue.
All the way, local food and beverages being sold by the roadside help someone forget the hustle and bustle in big towns.
The Ethiopian Herald June 16/2019
BY HAFTU GEBREZGABIHER