Pierre Emmanuel and Lea vs the reality


The African Saga had begun between 4 slidedowns and big rains. We have succeeded in arriving at Gessa Chare in the Dawro. Don’t try to google it, we tried and no one knew this area.
We had been visiting the InterAide projects in the woreda (district) of Loma to ask to the water point beneficiaries and to the people who don’t have access to drinking water. We had the hope to get a fabulous data base which could represent with an incomparable limpidity of all the positive spillovers of getting water.

The fact is that reality is more complex. First problem, Amharic is not our maternal language such as the local dialects and the English is not the maternal language of our two fantastic translators and of us. At the end, if the social study herself is complex when you focus on the methodology and the sampling, you have multiplied difficulties. So, when we have asked the question for the third time to be understood by our own translator, the questions that we have studied to be very fine lost their qualities. Moreover, some question become ridiculous when you sit down in the mud between one goat and one chicken, covered of flies trying to count the number of children living in 40m².


Nevertheless, we thought that we had some experience with Madagascar where we have already done a social study. But we always forget that in our daily life, we have just to push the button to get light, we don’t have to make a fire to cook, that we have no idea of the color of the cow we eat et that the main question each morning is to know if these socks is really the ones which go well with my coat. The first interview suffices to show us the priorities and to pull down us in reality.
Second problem which is not negligible, the logistic and the human management. In Ethiopia, lunch is holy and we must take it between 12 am and to 2 pm. Before, it is too early, after it becomes a real problem. The first day was a little bit complicated because our translator’s stomaches were empty… Moreover, we don’t foresee that there is not real village but only some houses spread in the mountains. And so, the transition between two interviews become quickly a 30 min treck. Thanks to the random sampling! We succeeded in doing all the interviews thanks to biscuits, anti-mosquitos shared with our translators.
Those two translators shaped an heteroclite pair. One has Marge Simpson haircut , the Elvis Presley personlaity and a moto with a big pancarte “ don’t worry, be happy”. The second one looks like Stromae with the personality of Melmane in the cartoon Madagascar with a strange tic: he says “yes” at the place of “sorry, I don’t understand you . Can you repeat please?”. The two translators are escorted by two drivers who love a new kind of music for us: the Ethiopian orthodox music.
The reward of all those adventures is an incredible panorama with high plateau falling in plains, like Sugarloaf mountains which drip in the river meanders and in the inset forest which circles little cob house.
Brief, Pierre Emmanuel & Lea go from one kebele to another in the woreda of Loma by motor bikes, without helmet on track with Jonnhy B. Good and Melmane, eating injeras and trying to apply random conditions to the hazard of field.