Well, its a long story how I got here so I'll spare you the boring details and give you the short version. At the last minute this opportunity came up and since I was in the "neighborhood" I decided to add this on to my trip. I said to my wife "life is too short, I'm adding on to the Uganda trip". Day 1 I headed to the airport a little after 10 from Kampala to catch the 2:45 AM flight from Entebbe, Uganda to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Uganda has the tightest firearms control of any country I have traveled to. Margaret (the meet and greet person for UW Safaris) had the policeman meet us at departures and he checked serial numbers then counted live and spent rounds. From there he filled out a document and had me sign. Then we went to the Ethiopian Airways counter to check in and he had to get another signature from the airline. Then once all that was done he followed me to passport control with all my luggage and once he saw me being processed he and a porter took my bags to the plane. Well I can say one thing, it may have taken over an hour but I am darn sure my bags are on the plane! Once through passport control I hit duty free to spend the 36,000 Ugandan Shillings I had on two candy bars and a bottle of water! We boarded the plane and took off for Addis Ababa, I almost immediately fell asleep only to be woken 20 minutes later with meal service! I can't believe a flight of two hours in the middle of the night and Ethiopian Airways is doing meal service. Of course the couple next to me ate but I managed to get brief, interrupted 15-20 minute naps until the captain announced final decent for landing. We deplaned and as I walked into the terminal, Addis appears to be a nice modern airport. I took the direction for baggage claim while the rest of the crowd took the "In Transit" direction. At passport control, I was the only person there! Strange, but at 5AM I was the only inbound passenger. I had obtained an E-Visa online and the whole process took less than 10 minutes. Off to baggage claim and before I got to the carousel a young man from the airline approached and asked if I needed assistance. I explained I had firearms in my luggage and he took it from there. Thirty minutes later he showed up with my bags and walked me to the customs "Red Lane". Here I was met by several nice, young people working there. None with identification badges or uniforms, looked like a bunch of twenty somethings just hanging out. I produced a copy of the import docs the outfitter emailed me and after a few minutes the young man appeared and said his boss told him he needed the original. I had the outfitters (Daniel Negussie) cell number and I showed it to the young man on the email in my phone. My AT&T phone indicated No Service. I asked him to please call and he got ahold of Daniel who was waiting outside of customs with the original documents. He came through with the docs and after a quick check of the serial numbers and round count we were on the road for the Bale Mountains! Daniel runs Rocky Valley Safaris, a company founded by his late Farther Col. Negussie Eshete back in the 80's. As one of the oldest operators in Ethiopia, they enjoy having one of the best areas for Mountain Nyala very near the Bale National Park. I had known of the Eshete's for many years through my friend Bert Klineburger. I felt like a zombie and told Daniel I will probably sleep most of the 8 hour trip to the mountains. I can't remember anything about Addis, I woke once a couple hours into the trip coming through a small village lined with street vendors and he asked if I wanted coffee, I said no but water would be great. He pulled over, rolled down the window spoke to a woman who was tending a stand. She brought over a 6 pack of bottled water and he paid her - never got out of the car! Then, he reversed about 20 feet and this stand had fresh avocados, mangos and other fruits but also there was smoke coming from the back. He called and out came a young woman and girl both in traditional Muslim garb. He ordered a coffee and 3 minutes later here she came with a small porcelain cup and saucer with a very dark cup of coffee. Once again, he never got out of the truck. Now that is service! We carried on and I fell asleep again. Up and down I was in and out so can't recall much but we passed through many small villages. I awoke as we came to a larger city with lots of people moving about. Daniel said "we will stop here for breakfast as it is the last, best place". He turned into a gated courtyard of an old hotel. We went inside and found our way to the dining room. I was pleasantly surprised they had wifi so I could text my family and let them know that I made it fine as I had no cell service so it would be several days before they hear from me again. I let Daniel make a suggestion for me, so I had an omelette and coffee. To say Ethiopian coffee is strong is an understatement! I like espresso but that's a child's drink compared to this stuff. I asked for some milk and the waitress brought a larger cup about 3/4 full of warm milk. I added the coffee to it and could then drink it but it was still very strong.