On the eve of Paradise

But maybe everything will change soon – the river Omo river will block the cascade of the Powerful hydroelectric power plants. The Ethiopian capital will finally receive uninterrupted power supply, and traditional cattle breeding in the valley of the river Retain in oblivion along with her flood pastures. Probably, then Mursi, Karo, Hamar, Surma and another one and a half dozen tribes will wear pants, wash with the bodies traditional patterns and will be submitted to the city in search of earnings. Still they go "in people" Only to exchange baths in the mountain rivers Golden Sand on the necessary goods.

And here it is not necessary for medicines, and not modern tools of labor, and certainly not household chemicals – without all this, they are perfect. People living in the Omo Valley are needed by Kalashnikov – so they protect the boundaries of their possessions, not marked on any world map. Since local conflicts in Northeast Africa began to be resolved with military supplies from the powers of the USSR and the United States, the automatic weapon displaced the throwing spears from even the most "Wild" tribes. In hand-to-hand fights with hijackers of livestock from hostile tribes still go to the traditional "Dvurogi" Nobles with protruding blades that are applied in battle scary ripped wounds. Such a knife, any respectful warrior of the Omo Valley, wears on the right wrist, but on his shoulder he has a rifle, and in rare cases – and expensive "Kalash".

However, traveling travelers especially nothing threatens. Aboriginals are very low the combat and other abilities of white people and tourists include at best with good-natured indulgence, at worst – with some contempt. Worthy rivals consider only neighbors by "Paradise". Miscellaneous Omo, Baro and Kibysh – a district of eternal conflicts inhabiting his tribal groups. Territorial disputes for possession of the best pastures and waterproofs are turned around, especially in years of nonsense, cruel and bloody slashes, in which the murder of the event is perceived as a valiant act.

Local men proudly demonstrate injury and scars from old wounds, but there are also special signs of military differences. When the warrior of Surma, Mursi, Bodi or Karo manages to kill a member of a hostile tribe, he makes himself a deep horseshoe bowl on the forearm. If the dead is a man, then on the right hand, if a woman is on the left. When "Order Planks" It is already all free space on hand, new notches have to do on the hips and other parts of the body.

Beauty requires sacrifice

Local women – and among them there are also real beauties – believe that scars decorate not only a man, and willingly create relief patterns on their own bodies. In order to turn out the convex, the aspect on the skin rubs the ashes, caustic juice of plants or even put insect larvae – after healing the wound is guaranteed.

Women Surma, Mursi and some other tribes there are other decorations – lip disks. To create such a decoration is a matter of not one day: Upon reaching the girl of the marriage age (he here is a fairly late – 18-20 years), her lower lip is pushing and in the resulting slot insert a small smoothly orange plate or a discharged clay plate. So that she keeps better, the lower cutters of the young ladies are knocked out. As the lip stretches, the plates are replaced by wider, as long as they have succeeded. When the decoration is removed, the drawn lip hangs almost to the chest level, like a bridle, in which a woman can easily cover both hands. The appointment of lip disks is reliably unknown: whether he was wanted from evil spirits, whether the demonstration of the richness of the kind. Undoubtedly one – modern owner of the lip "plates" very proud of its size and pattern and never go out "in light" Without decoration.

Much smaller victims require the original hairstyles for which the inhabitants of the valley are big masters. Familiar to all pigtails-dreadlocks with all their many numerous inferior "Towers", which Hamar build on her head with the help of clay, pumped pumpkins and bird feathers. Men of the Dassanch tribe wwel into hair colored threads so deftly that it turns out intricate "skullcap". In the tribe of Surma and Men, and women hair shave. Sometimes naked, but more often leaving strands on top of various, sometimes very bizarre form: for example, a spicy joke, or an elegant strip across a round skull. Often the remaining hair is painted in different colors.

Experiments in the field of color and drawing reaches the apogee in the mural on the body. White and red patterns on dark "Blot" skin – business card of people from the banks of Omo. The aborigines cover themselves different kinds of strips and points from the head to the pyat, thus compensating for almost a complete absence of clothes. The custom of painting itself, known for many other nations, is associated, as a rule, with the need to demonstrate social status or belonging to a specific tribe. But the deep poverty is still creativity … most succeeded in Bodyiart Caro and Surma. Children, adults and old people of these tribes can change "Color" several times a day like a costume. Occasioned – and immediately redesigned: white on black.

Case – hour, fun – time

All sorts of manipulations with their own body are the same important occupation for the Aboriginal southwestern Ethiopia, as well as care for feeding, if not more important than. While male tribes graze herd, they decorate themselves with patterns or invent complex hats. Women who remained in the village, in their free time rubbed each other with honey of wild bees and make hairstyles. In general, as it should be in "Paradise Garden", His inhabitants do not breathe without need, but they do not miss the case to have fun. Main entertainment – Dancing: mad-dynamic, literally to exhaustion. High jumps, rotation, skill on each other, "Bodania". In general, many dance pas imitate the movements of animals, especially close cattle.

Dances accompany all rituals, most of which are associated with age-related tests (initiations) and the acquisition of new social status. So, watched brides and marriage to Surma and Mursi precede the cruel wold battles – Dong. And Hamar, Bezadar, Caro and some other tribes of this area practices such a test like Buldzhamping – jumping, or rather running on the backs of the bulls. First, the participant of the ritual is required to run, not falling, according to the backs of the animals set in a row, which at this time hold tribesmen. Successfully passing it, he becomes "Mazha", that is, it can rightly be considered a man and choose a wife.

On the eve of Paradise

An important ending part of this rite is the ritual biching of girls. It happens as follows. Bringing ourselves first to ecstasy mad, rhythmic dancing, girls begin to pursue the tested junior junior tests with demonstrative sexual attacks. Those, in turn, drive them off and at the same time hardened hard, as if the rods, cane stems. Painfully hurt, to blood. But the girls do not pour, but, on the contrary, they take it as due, as a sign of strength and loyalty. Scars that stay from this spanking, then proudly demonstrated as peculiar signs of women’s honor.

Wife as a luxury

Actually the procedure for marriage is simple. It is limited to the fact that the groom matches the father of the bride about the amount of redemption. Since the main role in the economy of the Omo tribes plays cattle, he is the measure of their well-being and a kind of monetary unit. In the middle wife you can "strike" For 8-10 cows (bulls in payment do not go, only cows). For Ethiopia is a whole condition, and not every man can afford to have a spouse. Those who are rich and five, and eight, and more wives.

After paying the loan, the lucky man picks up a girl from the parents’ home and, no matter what his wife she is, building her a separate house. It brings its dowry, usually from the clothes, several bags of corn grains or fools (view of sorghum), a dozen chickens and other small things needed to arrange life arrangement. The spouse of his separate house, as a rule, does not have a half-hour image of family life, living alternately in his wives, which are not far away from each other, often even in one big fenced yard – Kraale.

If the wife dies shortly after marriage, the husband is entitled to demand from her parents to return the ransom. But more often this issue is solved differently: if the bride has another daughter who has reached the marriage age, then the widower in return receives her. If the girl is still too small, then parents promise her son-in-law in advance. For trunk behavior "Plugulated" Strictly followed, otherwise the family will have to return redemption.

Many details of the social device and life tribes of the Omo Valley became known only recently. Opening rebounding these amazing peoples, anthropologists and ethnographers are increasingly coming to these territories to describe languages ​​and fix the rite. They hurry to study their culture, hoping to understand, for example, what means ornaments, which are covered by their bodies, what are the roots and the motives of their art. Scientists do not accidentally hurry – all this you need to have time until civilization in the form of roads and power plants has not yet embraced these edges until local tribes remain their owners of their "Paradise Garden".

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