Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Of sleepless nights

So far(until a few days ago) it has been happy in Somalia no fear after all the village I live in is controlled by the Ethiopian forces and the brave guys as I have learnt the AS are called here are scared of them as the Ethiopians can do bad things to you this must be true because so many people have said this to me on different occasions and that if you are on the wrong and you try to bribe them they might even shoot you(Our armed forces should go to the same training school as these guys)

I have also learnt how to spot an AS..............characteristics include trouser length that is above the ankle,certain style of tying the imama (headgear for men-arafats) and always have a beard.If you are ever in the bush and you see someone like this run for it,the down side of this I always look at people to see the length of their trouser.

A while ago there was an explosion in town and people talk about it like its no big deal(me kinda scared and starting to wonder why did I come here), a few nights later as I sit and do my random things the guys come and tell me that you know tonight things are really bad and the AS are planning to attack the town at night and their first target is usually agency offices/guest houses.You'll never know how much fear these words can actually elicit unless they are being told to you and they are true.

So what do we do? There is no way we are sleeping here,they call their friends in town and a colleague is kind enough to let me sleep at her place.Since the place is really hot she asks if I want to sleep outside........seriously?? there is no way that is happening but I simply say no.

All the night I kept on thinking is this worth it,why didn't I ask more questions on accessibility and the security of the place before I came.Longest night ever.I was expecting to hear these war stories in the morning but no,apparently the Ethiopian forces kept them out yaaaaaaay.

I call the security focal point and relocate to Dollow for a week.Dollow feels like home I wish I could explain this but its a huge relief being there.I'm the kinda of person who can sleep at 7PM and in Dollow I can if I wanted because there is some sense of security and you don't feel the need to listen to hear if there is someone forcefully entering the gate in the middle of the night.

Slowly getting used to this and learning to differentiate between AS rumours and actual AS stories.Weird enough I listen out at night to hear if the neighbours are talking and their children crying/making noise if they are I know there is no fear but if everything is quite I start calling people to ask what is happening tonight and yes they attack at night only(I have to confirm if this is true or just another rumour)

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