My Favorite Souvenirs from Ethiopia

Traveling this week through Ethiopia, my favorite moments were far from the cities and far from the main roads. (If you simply assess things from what you experience on the paved main roads, your judgment is skewed by “road bias.”) We’d drive in rugged SUVs almost cross-country to reach communities of people who aspire to earn $2 a day. Of course, with little language in common and economic realities that are so vastly different, there is a big gap between them and me. But the big smiles, the lack of any angry edge, and the adorable children have left me tuned in to our common humanity. These memories are the Ethiopian souvenirs I’ll be taking home.

I’m in Ethiopia to scout locations for a new one-hour special about hunger, airing on public television next fall. You can find out more about my trip at


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