I had a meeting in the capital this weekend, so I caught a mini bus out of Jimma on Saturday at 5 a.m. It was still pretty dark out, and I saw my first hyenas in country. They looked like a cross between a cat, a dog and a monkey. And bigger than I thought. Anyway, it was also raining and the driver had a serious need for speed, so I closed my eyes and prayed for most of the way. I got to Addis 3 hours earlier than usual.
In the city, I line taxied my way over to the hotel. Actually…I line taxied myself over to some ice cream, then started walking toward the hotel. On the way, a man in front of me turned around and hocked spit at me.
I stood, stunned, completely grossed out. I actually kept repeating, “gross.. gross.. gross.” He apologized and asked if I had any tissues to wipe it off. No. I lied. I don’t know why I lied.
He had a shirt in his hand and I wanted to wipe myself off with that. Instead he grabbed a small piece of tissue from his pocket and started wiping my stomach. The spit was mostly on my arm. I pushed him away and took the tissue to start wiping my arm. He took his shirt and started wiping my stomach again. I pushed him away again and he turned around, apologizing, and jumped in a car 20 feet behind us.
I don’t think you have to guess what that was all about. I checked my purse and found I still had my phone, my money, my camera. It was really confusing and I was still stunned from having his gross spit all over me. I re-checked my bag and couldn’t find anything missing. Some girls behind me caught up and asked if I was Ok. I told them I couldn’t find anything missing. Then I realized a magazine I had on top of all my stuff was gone. I don’t think he could reach any of the important stuff below it.
The girls told me I was lucky, and that God loves me. I think this is the first time in my life I’ve ever been spit on and felt lucky.