Visiting Ethiopia invites you to walk through human history in real time, and perhaps challenge some preconceived notions. Known as “the land of origins,” Ethiopia presents the visitor with a number of preternatural claims – some based on fact; others on ancient myth and legend. For example: Ground Zero for the evolution of humans; the launchpad for Homo sapiens’ migrations out of Africa; the longest ruling dynasty in history founded by Menelik, the son of King Solomon and the Queen of Sheba, who also brought the Ark of the Covenant out of the Levant to Ethiopia where it resides today. . .just for starters.
In the south, along the banks of the Omo River, reside a variety of tribes who live as they have for centuries, perhaps millennia. In the north, life is dominated by a different set of ritual and practices, those of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church, established in the 4th Century AD.
The modern world, though, has encroached, and it remains to be seen how Ethiopia balances respect for traditions with demands of modernity. As the only African nation to have avoided European colonization, perhaps Ethiopia may find a uniquely African solution.