I've been meaning to start a blog for the Travers Fellowship, but so far haven't had the time to find the right platform. I thought I'd try Google+ for now and see how that goes, especially since until I travel, I won't have a lot of photos to share.
Planning had been going pretty well as I started the slow process of setting up visits to different projects in Ethiopia and Tanzania. I'm already a month or so away from my planned departure. But the past few days I started hearing a bit more about the problems Ethiopia's election could cause - difficulties getting a journalist visa, maybe some travel restrictions.
A May election and its travel consequences just weren't on my radar when I wrote my pitch in November.
Now it turns out it's likely there will be a travel ban imposed, possibly until the end of June. So even if I made it into the country before that happened, it could be hard to get out. Plus, the Department of Foreign Affairs, Development and Trade could put their projects on hold around the election, and some NGOs will place restrictions on their workers.
All of that means Ethiopia is no longer an option for me. I intend to be back in Canada by mid-June, writing and editing my work.
I'm now looking for a new country to visit. Back to square one after five months of research on Ethiopia.