Now I Have To Find A Good Real Estate Agent In Addis Ababa

November 6, 2009

091103-new-ocean-02I grew up landlocked and wary of what lurked under the dark, scum-covered surfaces of the few lakes/glorified ponds we had. If I can’t see the bottom, I’m not wading in.

However, a stretch of beach, preferably unpopulated, is a glorious thing. I think that a beach house would suit Paloma and me (and the menagerie) quite well. Fortunately, opportunity has presented itself and I am staking a claim to a stretch of prime beach for us now.

The downside is that it is in Ethiopia.

There is a thirty-file mile crack, as wide as twenty feet, in the deserts of Ethiopia. Geophysicists believe it will one day be an ocean. And oceans mean beaches and a beach is the ideal place for a beach house.

I would have to think that it’s a buyer’s market for real estate in Ethiopia.

(is there any part of that poor country that isn’t impoverished, famine-stricken, and/or at war?)

So, take a guess as to where the future beachfront property will be, purchase some land, and wait for Mother Nature and the “highly active volcanic boundaries along the edges of tectonic ocean plates” to work their magic.

I shall name our beach house Amity as homage to Chief Brody, Hooper, and Quint.

Of course, this ocean is scheduled to arrive in “a million years or so,” so that might be a problem.

Toto – Africa
from Toto IV

Is there a more enduring hit from the ’80s than Toto’s Africa? It seems to have seeped into the collective consciousness of most of the planet, including that of a Slovenian a cappella group.

Juluka – Scatterlings of Africa
from Scatterlings

Juluka, a racially mixed South African band led by Johnny Clegg, was likely the first “world music” that I ever heard and, not surprisingly, it was courtesy of 97X playing Scatterlings of Africa.

Clegg and Juluka is a fascinating and inspiring story, certainly worthy of more than a few scant words here. The interracial make-up of the band and the politics of their songs put the members in jeopardy simply to perform in a South Africa divided by apartheid.

Here’s a nice piece on Clegg from the early ’90s.

Zap Mama – African Sunset
from 7

Zap Mama was formed in Belgium by Marie Daulne, who had been born in Zaire. Weeks after being born, her father was killed in that country’s civil unrest and her family fled into the forests, taking shelter with a tribe of pygmies, before heading to Europe.

Years later, she returned to Africa and studied pygmy vocal techniques which she incorporated into the music of Zap Mama.

Enya – Storms In Africa
from Watermark

Enya is like Bjork to me in that if news broke tomorrow that either one of them were actually aliens, I think I’d simply shrug and say, “Yeah, that makes sense.” There’s just something otherworldly about her.

I was surprised to realize that I have half a dozen of Enya’s albums. I don’t think I’ve ever listened to any of them all the way through and I couldn’t name more than a handful of her songs, but they’re like dreamy little interludes when they pop up on shuffle.