I caught a minibus to Lalibela airport at 1000, once there I had to wait for the check in desk to open, which it eventually did 45 minutes before departure. It only being a small plane everyone managed to get through on time and the plane departed just a few minutes late.
My flight was to Addis Ababa but we had a scheduled stop at Gondor, another north Ethiopian town an route. Half an hour after setting off we were back on the runway at Gondor, about 2/3 of the passengers good off and were replaced by other people. The plane refuelled and the engines were turned back on after half an hour being stationary. After a further 5 minutes the pilot told everyone to disembark due to a mechanical issue. Thankfully we didn’t have to wait long, only half an hour, and we were soon back on board and then on our way to Addis Ababa.
The journey took the scheduled 50 minutes which for mW was unfortunately not quick enough as my connecting flight to Hargesia (in northern Somalia) had already left before I had even got off the plane. Straight away on disembarking I headed to the ‘connecting flights’ area and explained the situation. To be reissued a ticket for a different time I had to be taken to the International Airport which meant I had to wait for 15 minutes for some transport to take me 2 minutes away. Once there I found the correct desk and they were actually very helpful. They issued me with a new ticket (for the following morning) and booked me into a hotel for the night. All was well and good until I tried going through passport control. I think the fact that I hadn’t arrived at this terminal blew the blokes mind, added to that I had a multi entry visa and he couldn’t work out why I was already stamped into the country. Anyway after much back and forth between offices and heated conversations (not involving me) I was finally let through.
I was taken by the hotel’s private minibus to the hotel where I was created and shown to my room. It wasn’t out of this world but it beats your average hostel room for sure, especially when you’re not paying for it. Dinner was included which took the form of a huge buffet so I was able to have some fried fish, rice, saladI would coveish, a lamb dish, a chicken dish and some potatoes. Feeling content I made good use of the hotel’s internet, the best I had comes across in Ethiopia.
All in all not a complete disaster but I would’ve preferred to have been in Somaliland already.