National Geographic : 1931 Jun
THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE Photograph by W. Robert Moore IN COMMEMORATION OF ETHIOPIA'S RECENT CORONATION The monument to the enthronement of Emperor Haile Selassie and Empress Manen stands on a newly built-up triangle in the center of the capital. The symbol suggests the name of the ruler, which means Power of the Trinity (see text, page 682). well oiled, his white teeth dazzling, and his shoulders draped with several yards of white cotton sheeting arranged like a toga, is a vision not easily overlooked or for gotten. To complete the picture, there is usually a pet goat or fat-tailed sheep which has followed its master out of the hut and blinks in bored manner at the train. Since these natives are at least nominally Mos lems, dogs are taboo. But man must have his animal companion; hence the sheep or the goat. The first day of this railway journey ends usually at 6 in the afternoon, at Dire dawa, the first town of importance after the train enters Ethi opia. It is on the fringe of a plateau 4,000 feet above sea level and a 200-mile climb from the coast. Rain sometimes falls and the climate is equa ble. There is a sub stantial and well-kept railway station and an Ethiopian custom house (page 707). CEREMONIES FOR VISIT ING OFFICIALS: CUS TOMS FOR OTHERS The customs ordeal isnotforme. Iama visiting official. The Ethiopian governor of the town meets me with a considerable number of capable looking soldiers. I am escorted with marked ceremony through the customs to one of the two frontier-style ho tels. There is also a third hotel when the proprietor is not away hunting antelopes or lions. An interesting side trip from Diredawa is the old Mohammedan walled town of Harar, four hours away by rough motor trip or a whole day by mule back. Camels, horses, or mules are available as a means of trans portation, but the mule is considered the most appropriate for one of actual or ap parent high station in life (see page 739). The trip is now almost a commonplace one. When I first knew it, the governor provided an escort of about 30 soldiers to frighten away renegade tribesmen from the coastal desert country, who in those days of greater "personal liberty" found much diversion and occasional profit in looting the lone traveler on the trail to Harar. The Ethiopian authorities in re cent years have become kill-joys in so far as that particular diversion is concerned.