Following the Blue Nile

Toward the end of the day, our boat floats towards the outflow of Lake Tana: the source of the Blue Nile River. Hippos peer up out of the water at us, as we peer back at them and the start of this legendary river that we (hope that we) will follow into Sudan and, eventually, Egypt.

We follow the Blue Nile a further 30km to Tis Abay: the Smoke of the Nile, the Blue Nile Falls. A pale shadow of its former self, before the construction of a hydroelectric plant that diverts a large percentage of its water. We gaze at the immense rocks previously carved by the great water falling, imagining Tis Abay as it was, as depicted on the Ethiopian 1 Birr note.