Stretching north from Arada almost to Entoto, the site of Ethiopias itinerant capital before Emperor Menelik founded Addis Ababa in 1887, this quiet, leafy residential area is home to a close-knit community of low-income potters and weavers, groups that are traditionally ostracised by Ethiopian society as they are widely believed to have the power of the evil eye. There are no foreigners living in this area. Daily life revolves around the church of Kechene Medhane Alem (Ethiopian Orthodox) at the geographical centre of the district. Housing is a mix of small state-owned homes and shanty dwellings strung out along mud roads that dip and rise through lush vegetation and small plots of land. The area is dotted with small shops and roadside kiosks selling only the most basic items; the area is also home to a colourful handicrafts and traditional clothes market at Shiro Meda, the just north of the heavily guarded United States embassy on the Entoto Road, where many of the local craftspeople peddle their wares. The commercial districts of Piazza and Arat Kilo are both within easy reach by public transport.
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Kechene, Addis Ababa