Tags: GAP 2016

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On our final day in Gondar, we had the opportunity to meet with the president of the University of Gondar, Dr Desalegne Mengesha, pictured below between Kyle and Terry. This meeting was an excellent ending to our Gondar experience. And, although we were sad to leave Gondar, we were excited to experience Addis.
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Mention East African culture or the dominate language of Swahili to a Westerner and you might just stir up images of brightly clad Masai people with gauged (stretched lob piercings) ears, elaborate jewelry and lethal spears. Ironically enough, the Masai have their own language, yet four warriors grace the cover of my own Swahili phrasebook. Go figure! Anyway, we’ve all seen the scene on TV or in the pages of National Geographic. For many tourists, the Masai village visit is an integral part of a safari.
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Well, let’s pack our bags! China just released a regulation that severely restricts importing cross-boarder and direct-to-consumer retail goods, so I think we’re done here. Around 1200 products were placed on a list of allowable import goods, and, unfortunately, the only copy I have is twenty-four pages of simplified Chinese characters (or are they traditional?). In any case, I cannot read either; and what’s the chance an air filter will be on that short list anyway? Not likely!
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This week was amazing! We traveled from Shanghai to Nanjing and then to Beijing. The bullet train in China is FAST; it travels at a speed of 300 km (186 miles) per hour. The train is clean and tidy, and the seats are comfortable. Additionally, the weather has been good on these travels days, and we were able to enjoy the beautiful view of rural areas of China during the trip.