Munchy in Ethiopia - Smoking Water (Travel Blog #5)

12/02/2015 by Munchy

Munchy in Ethiopia - Smoking Water (Travel Blog #5)

Munchy in Ethiopia 2015 - Travel Blog Day 5

<link https: www.reggaeville.com artist-details reggaeville photos gallery reggaeville-10242015 _blank external-link-new-window>CLICK HERE TO VIEW THE PHOTO-BLOG!


After our little community of fate proofed to be a good combination, Belgian Wouter, German Carsten, and I meet again the next day to take a trip to the Blue Nile Falls together. Our first challenge for the day: Find the right bus to Tis Abay, the village where the waterfall is located! Although many Ethiopians speak good English, they all seem to be hiding today and those whom we meet at the bus station may possibly understand where we want to go but don't seem too trustworthy giving us instructions which one of the about 50 unmarked buses we should take. Eventually we take the risk and enter the one that most of them pointed at, because no risk, no fun, right?!

It is Sunday, the weather is again nice and hot, and many locals had the same idea as we. As we enter, the bus is pretty full already, but of course there is always little space left for half your butt to squeeze in. With cowboy hats and fancy sunglasses a group of teenagers is having the time of their lives. To Ethiopian music blasting from the speakers they are standing in the aisle clapping, cheering, and shoulder dancing with furious enthusiasm as we drive. Unlike other nationalities that dance with their feet, their hips, or wide arm gestures Ethiopians really have mastered their upper back moves! To the rhythmic music they twitch, shrug, and move their shoulders back and forth, up and down, and experience the greatest excitement about it – so do we on this ride! The famous waterfalls are just 20 miles South East of Bahir Dar but the fact that only a dirt aka “back massage” road leads to Tis Abay, still makes the ride an hour long. But time flies when you (or the Ethiopian crew) have fun, right?!

From the center of the village the walk starts down a little hill, over the Portuguese Bridge that dates back from 1626, and again up another steep little mountain. We started our trip early because the mid-day sun this close to the equator is not tempting, yet the heat is already upon is in the early hours. Many children who would be in school during the week spend their Sunday trying to sell us scarves and lunch boxes made from goat skin (sorry, Vegetarian, not the right costumer, kiddies). They keep us company and impress with their good English skills (where were you when we needed to find the bus earlier?!).

After another 15 minutes we finally start to hear the sound from the distance before our eyes meet the waterfall a little underneath our hill. About 40 meters the water drops from the stream of the Blue Nile that originates in Lake Tana, where we visited the outlet yesterday. The Blue Nile together with the White Nile that rises in the Great Lakes region in central Africa is one of the major tributaries of the Nile, the world's longest river that empties into the Mediterranean Sea in Egypt. Due to an hydro-electric station that utilizes the natural power since 2003, much of the flow is taken, the falls are only about half as wide as they used to be and parts of the river bed have dried out. Still the view impresses me and adds another great aspect to the country's diverse nature. After we cross a shaky suspension bridge we finally reach the pool, where the water drops into. “Tis Abay” is Amharic for “smoking water” and smokey it is for real. I enjoy a seat close to the steam to cool down from the sun and feel the spray and foam tickle my heated skin. Cows and goats, who had the same idea, graze relaxed around me, and the teenagers are still having a blast, now simply singing their own music while partying to it.

We eventually find peace on the other side of the fall, upon the cliff before the water drops. Here the Blue Nile flows almost silently, flowers grow wild, and farmers use the nutritious soil that was formerly the river bed to grow corn and greens. Through those fields is where our path leads on until we have circled back close to Tis Abay – but of course on the other side of the stream. A little boat picks us up and brings us back to our starting point and eventually the main street, where buses are already waiting to return the visitors home. What a sweet tour through the country side!


<link https: www.reggaeville.com artist-details reggaeville photos gallery reggaeville-10242015 _blank external-link-new-window>CLICK HERE TO VIEW THE PHOTO-BLOG!




YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE THIS