Blogs from the Ethiopia Research Project

Louis Jacobs

Louis Jacobs is a professor and president/director of the Institute for the Study of Earth and Man at SMU. He is a vertebrate paleontologist who is utilizing the fossil record to understand the interrelationships of biotic and abiotic events through time. His current research focuses on the major reorganization of terrestrial ecosystems during the middle portion of the Cretaceous and in the Cenozoic.

Dec. 8, 2006

This is my first trip to Ethiopia, although I have worked in a number of other African countries.

Right away a few things stand out. First is the food, the spicy meat and vegetables served with the unusual sourish bread called njira, that you do not see elsewhere. Next is the history, such as the huge 18th century castle capping the hill in Gondar.

But mostly it is the friendly people. Their sprit was clear when we arrived at our camp site. They have a way of greeting that includes a small hug to the right, then one to the left, and then another back to the right, and sometimes, when greeting a very close friend, they add a few more hugs. The all of us were greeted in this way, but for the returning members of the crew, and especially Bonnie, the greeting was especially touching, and a terrific way to begin field work.