“ Until I get enough cows, I am young”
Name : Bori Balachew
Gender : Male
DoB : Unknown, Around 1984
City of Birth : Small village near Jinja, Omo Valley, Ethiopia
Status : Married (2 wives)
Family : 3 girls and 2 boys
Hometown : Hamer Village Erea Kayisa, Omo Valley, Ethiopia
Education : None
Job : Cattle keeper and farmer
Religion : Animst
Politics : –
As a child… How would you picture yourself at 30?
JOB – How did you decide to do this job? Since the age 8 or 9 years old, I keep cattle and I take care of our plantations (farming). This is the Hamer way of living, when you are a man, you keep cattle and work on the countryside.
This is the Hamer way of living, when you are a man, you keep cattle and work on the countryside.
HOME / PLACE OF LIVING – Where you thought you would be living by now? I was born in Hamer tribe in a village near Jinja, in Omo Valley, South Ethiopia. I knew that after the bull jump ceremony, the moment I would choose my first wife, I would also choose where I will build my adult and family life. As per Hamer tradition, once married, I moved to my wife village: Erea Kayisa, just a few km away from my native village.
Striking and memorable events…
BEST MEMORY – What is your best memory? The best memory I have in mind is from my childhood, when I used to play in the bushes and when I used to catch cattle for fun. This would happen pretty often.
GREATEST ACHIEVEMENT – As a proud member of Hamer tribe and a newly adult man, I spent time into the bushes after the bull jumping ceremony and before getting married. During this time, I was only allowed/able to drink blood and milk from the goats in order to feed me. I am really proud of this few weeks of my life.
Looking back / Reviewing expectations
TODAY – I handle more responsibilities because I am a married man and have to take care of my family. On the other hand, I am not worried anymore about the food because we are able to be independant (they grow food and keep cattle).
30 years old, a turning point?
WHAT’S NEW? – Did you notice some changes since you are 30 YO? Given all the resposibilities that I am facing, I can say that my life is totally different.
My life is toally different.
My Typical day
YOUR STORY IN 10 YEARS – What is the story you want to tell within 10 years? I will be living in the same village with my 2 wifes and children. I wish I will have a bigger farm with more cattle* (cows and oxes) and more arms: pistols and kalashnikov.
*Cattle is the way to measure wealth in most tribes in South Omo
THE WORLD IN 10 YEARS – How do you imagine the world you will be living in within 10 years? Not applicable. The main members of Hamer tribe know their own village, but do not have awareness either of the other cities in Ethiopia nor other countries in the world.
Fears and Dreams…
FEARS – What are you afraid of? Before I was afraid of ennemies from the other tribes. Today, we do not have any – In that way, I feel safer. My main fear would be that wild animals of the savannah would attack our cattle (such as leopard or hyena). That is why we own Kalashnikov, to defend ourselves.
ACHIEVEMENTS – What are the things you want to achieve? As I said, simply, work, family and house..
DREAMS – What is your craziest dreams? I see myself drinking and dancing on the marketplace*.
*There is a Hamer market in Key Afar.