On and off the grid

Sunday, January 15

For the first time since our arrival in Ethiopia 18 days ago, we should have uninterrupted Internet until our departure from Frankfurt Wednesday morning. We bought a local SIM card for my phone on our very first morning, and our guide assured us we should be able to access the Internet on it. He did on his phone, routinely.

But although I’ve used the phone a lot to make calls and text people within Addis, it never would allow me to get online. Various folks told me I needed to call the central Ethiopian telecommunications office, to get them to turn that feature on. We dialed and dialed; were cut off and put on endless holds. Finally I gave up.

But I’ve been writing, almost every day. And we just arrived back at out guest house in Addis, where we’ll spend out last day and a half.What follows is what would have appeared, had we not encountered those road blocks on the Ethiopian information highway.

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