Wando Genet University-Haili Salasi Hotel in Awasa

July 30th, 2010 Kokosa-Wando-Awasa

When I awoke this morning I checked my cell phone for service and was disappointed to see that there was no coverage.  I was thrilled about 15 minutes later when my phone rang and it was Joshua.  We had a nice discussion and scripture study as I stood out in the middle of our pasture in Kokosa.  Mulgeta had already gone to prepare the cows so I had to cut our conversation short.  We bred another dozen animals and found one that was aborting.  She was probably pregnant to Mulgeta’s artificial insemination breeding a month before, unless the guards had let our fattening bulls get too close to the cows.

We packed up and prepared to go while Abera gave instructions to Nuritu.  While I was waiting for them I started weeding the garden.  It didn’t take long before several of the guards were helping me.  Before Abera finished we had weeded the lettuce, onions, squash, tomatoes and carrots.  Our staff doesn’t have a lot of ambition on their own but they work hard when you set the example for them.  Their culture hasn’t had exposure to planting vegetables.

We dropped off Jamal, Sultan, Gemechu, and Mulgeta in Shashamene, grabbed some food and water then drove to the VOH compound.  The cow was in heat so we bred her.  I hope that she conceives this time because her milk production is really getting low.

The three inch leeches that were pulled out of the cows mouth. 
Abera and I drove to Wando Genet University where we met Girma and Emebet.  I looked over the cows and the facilities and asked a lot of questions so that I could give them some good advice on how to improve their production. I could have made many suggestions but settled on advising them to milk the cows at even intervals.  One of the cows had bloody slobber coming from its mouth.  When I pointed it out they told me it was because of leaches then proceeded to pull two, three inch long leaches from underneath the cows tongue.  We also found another one in the cow’s water trough.  Apparently they attach when they are really small when the cows drink from the nearby pond.

They currently milk at 6:30am and 3:00pm.  In the morning the cows have full udders but in afternoon they are not.  The full udder in the morning sends the message to the cow’s brain to slow done her production.  All of the cows are in good shape but they only give about 6 liters of milk per cow. They should be giving at least 15 maybe as much as 20.  Girma gave us a liter of fresh milk as we left.

We drove from Wando over to Awasa.  It is a very rich area that grows a lot of sugar cane.  Unfortunately they also grow a lot of chat which is a strong hallucinogenic. There is a lot of money in selling it.  Many of the car wrecks are due to the drivers being high on chat.  It is illegal to drive while on it but that doesn’t stop a lot of the drivers from using it.
The new Haili Salasi Hotel in Awasa. It is a very nice new hotel bordering Lake Awasa
Abera and I stopped at the Haili Salasi hotel.  Paul suggested that I might want to try it if I was in the area.  I checked in, 1500 ETB/night ($85).  Abera and I walked around to see the pool, hot tub, saunas, restaurant, and gym.  We got kicked out of the gym because I had my hiking boots on.  The lady said that we were ruining the carpet.  I thought that I had stepped out of Ethiopia for a while.

I got settled in my very nice room and went down to the restaurant.  They had set up a large buffet for a conference that was being held in the hotel. They said that I could fill a plate from the buffet and take it into another room to eat it.  The cost would be 316 ETB($23) where most meals in Ethiopia are 100 ETB tops.  I looked over the food and decided that it wasn’t worth it.  I walked around the lake front then went back to my room and had spam and crackers for dinner.