Day 3: Gondar
This morning I was met at 8:30am by my driver and was transferred by road to Gondar. Gondar is known as “The Yellow City” because as the Italians first arrived, in the pilaso (town center) they painted all of the buildings yellow…. hence the yellow city. We walked through one of the largest open air markets that sells everything from incense to groceries and even clothing. There is even a section of “Good Will” sent from the United States!
Gondar located as in a “bowl of hills,” with walls of castles and monuments. After my tours of the Imperial Castle Compound, we made our way to the Bath of Emperor Fasiladas. On the 18th and 19th of January each year, there is a procession through Gondar to the Bath for the Timkat Ceremony. During the ceremonies, the Tabot, a model of the Ark of the Covenant, which is present in every Ethiopian church, reverently leads the procession of high priests and locals to the infamous bath.
There is tradition during this ceremony that people bring lemons to give to those whom they like or love. Later as we were leaving the market place, a little boy through an lemon peel through my car window. Although it wasn’t January, it became my joke that he intended for it to be his offering to me!