Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Ethiopian spider

An American mercenary, an old African hand, once told me that in Ethiopia there is a spider that eats only living flesh. It's called the camel spider and is equipped with a prong on its back that emits a local anaesthetic. He told me that at night the camel spider descends while you sleep, gives you a shot, and eats your lips. I slept with my hand over my mouth.

Source: Donald R Katz, "Ethiopia After the Revolution: Vultures Return to the Land of Sheba",  Rolling Stone, 21 September 1978

Prophesying newborns

On Friday, word spread that shortly after a woman delivered twins at the Tirupur Government Hospital, one of the babies died and the surviving baby mysteriously spoke, warning that  an evil spell has been cast due to which several infants would die. After delivering the "message of death", the baby too died. Within no time some people performed special pooja and started breaking coconuts smeared with turmeric outside their homes to ward off evil.
[...] By evening many junctions in the town were filled with broken coconut shells. Incidentally most of these coconuts were broken at junctions where three roads meet, which parents believed was the "entry gate" for Satan.

Source: IBN Live, 27 August 2012