So, it is Saturday and a few friends of mine of Ethiopian and Eritrean descent (The Gorilla and The Rat) give me a call and invite me to a Habeshan (Ethiopian and/or Eritrean) wedding reception to be held at the hotel formerly known as Ramada Inn (right where Club Europe is). I decide to go at the last minute and finish up my college football viewing for the day (How about them Gators? What the hell happened to Notre Dame?? Clemson very well just might be for real – but I digress), and I headed over to the reception with a friend of mine (The Hamster) at around 12am. I was wearing a gray, 3 buttoned suit while the Hamster was dressed in a dress shirt and slacks (once again showing his uncanny ability to be a fashionable Somalian). We walk into a ballroom filled to capacity with at least 200-300 hundred people. We are immediately welcomed in by a few friends and encouraged to head over to the bar to get a cold, refreshing brewski.
The one thing I absolutely love about Habeshan people is how cordial they can be with everyone. To them, the minute you walk in that door, you are instantly a part of their fraternity, you are treated as brethren. They welcome you with open arms and a Heineken. How can you not love that? Is there really a better, more conceivable way to greet people? A Habeshan has to be an ambassador or hold some sort of foreign relations position in the US. Everytime any influential foreign politician arrives to the US, they would be initially greeted with a handshake, and then immediately offered a refreshing brewski. It just makes sense. I didn’t even mention the women, who, in my opinion, are the most beautiful in all of Africa and in the discussion of most beautiful in the world (really, they are…there can’t be too many other ethnicities that can compete with Habeshans – they do look that damn good, it’s true), and there were a few scattered throughout the crowd on Saturday night.
Habeshans are passionate, melancholy, fun-loving people, and that makes it easy to assimilate with them. There were many handshakes and more than a few stories exchanged. The atmosphere was relaxed and the people were there to affiliate, drink, and/or dance. And there were those who were there for all three, and on Saturday night, I can’t say with certainty that me and a few friends of mine were excluded from that group. We eventually made our way to the dance floor and did some traditional Habeshan dances (think the Harlem shake with a whole lot less shake). We finally decided to call it a night after it was well past 4am. It just felt good to reconnect and catch up with some of my habeshan folks.