This was our return visit to Addis Ababa on Sunday 14 April back from Mekele after visiting the Negash mosque.
Zahra who we met previously after Juma prior to flying to Mekele took us to her home welcomed by her two sisters and we enjoyed the home cooked Ethiopian meal followed by Ethiopian cultural ritual of drinking coffee three times.
Abdur Rahman, our friend was fasting and he invited us the next day to have Iftar with his family. We were well looked after by his family. One of their youngest daughter, three years old loved being photograph and often was ready to give a pose to take her photo. Abdur Rahman’s wife gave us Berber, a spice that is hot and usually is eaten with injera.
On Tuesday 16 April, We were picked up by Mr Taha Abdi to have a quick lunch with his family made a lavish Ethiopian lunch before catching our flight to Nairobi.
At the airport, we placed AMUST in men’s prayer room and handed a paper to a Somalian Sheikh who could read English.
While arriving in Nairobi, due to Easter lots of people were going out for holiday by road to another city, so other side of the road was chock a block, a big traffic jam.
Next morning our driver Duncan was booked for the whole day to go to African Safar, Light academy, Harmony Institute Islamic foundation, Ebru TV station and to have dinner with Hawama’s family . We used the map to plan our day trip in a way that we do a circle and visit efficiently all the places we had planned. The appointments were made with various organisations.
Our first visit was to the African Safari and spent four hours were there. Many animals such as zebra, giraffe, wild beast, ostrich, antelope, warthog and Heina were roaming around freely, we were caged in the car.
As our safari was ending we saw the lioness with her three cubs. We were told that animals are not fed by the Safari people. Apparently, all animals find their food on their own.
Our next destination was Light international school, a beautiful complex with 300 students. The school is in a very posh suburb. Another campus has 400 students.
After lunch we went for a tour of the school. We saw the biology and physics labs with glass walls, where you can observe from outside what students are doing.
We visited the computer section where two alumnis were working on making videos movies.
At the school we met a third generation businessman, Haneef, whose forefathers migrated from Gujrat to Kenya. When he found out that we have spent much of our time in Kashmir, he invited for dinner to meet his Kashmiri wife.
Our next destination was to Harmony institute. It is like Affinity in Sydney. It is a big complex with a swimming pool. We met the staff and had a good dialogue sipping Kenyan tea. We prayed Zuhr and Asr there and saw the promotion video of their activities.
Our next destination was the Ebru TV station and we met the director. This is a Turkish station in partnership with Kenyan TV. We drank Turkish tea and discussed about the TV programs etc. The director showed us around and took us to the kitchen where the cooking show was done and also took us to the news room.
Later we went to Islamic foundation. Islamic Foundation’s main head office is in UK but the ground work is being done Nairobi. They are doing a lots dawaah and community work.
Mr Akhtar Rao is incharge and at that moment he was in Pakistan due to his ill health. We talked with him for a long time on the phone. He know our Matiur Rahman uncle in Saudi Arabia and other colleagues. He related a number of stories with his encounters with Maulana Maududi that were part of the history and very interesting indeed.
Through Islamic Foundation, Muslim Aid Australia sponsors 300 orphan girls education in Nairobi. Another person who has been in Nairobi for a long time is Mr Asad originally from Bhopal. We had a long conversation with him.
Later we went to Hawama’s place and met her mum and daughter, Anisa. Hawama took us to the Indian shop and bought savoury items for us and our mutual Australian friend Masood Hussainy. She took us to other shop and there we bought Kenyan tea and coffee.
We celebrated Zia’s 66th surprise birthday and had dinner with Hawama’s large extended family.
It was getting late so we quickly we visited Haneef’s house and met his Kashmiri wife who was very happy to see us. Haneef’s son is 10 years old and goes to Agha Khan School and doing IB.
We drank Kashmiri Qahwa that was especially made for us. Mustafa, who welcomed us at the Light International School came to Haneef’s house and gave us 2 pkts of Turkish tea for us and two pkts for his friend at Amity college.
We came back late at the hotel and said goodbye to Duncan who has been such a great driver. Very humble and courteous. We were very much impressed with his caring attitude.
Next day we got up early to work on weekly AMUST newsletter and then we packed and went to swim had breakfast and repacked our luggage as Kenya airline only allows one luggage with 23 kg.
Francis from the hotel took us to the airport. On the way to airport we had to get down had the security check. Apparently, in Nairobi there has been bomb blasts and from there on the security has been strict. The car was checked as well. Francis picked us up from the other side.
On the way to the airport there were many figurines of animals and we took lots of photos. Nairobi is a very clean place. Lots of modern buildings and people speaks English fluently.
There are lots of Acacia tree here. The roads are clean and smooth.
We then flew to Johannesburg, South Africa on 18 April.