Bahar-Dar, Ethiopia
Date:
24/09/2000

PHOTOS
 
The spray from the Blue Nile Falls can be felt 50 meters away, and after hiking 10 minutes upwards to the best vantage-point, the moisture feels fantastic.

Sunset over the Blue Nile Falls


 
The sheer volume of water pouring over the Blue Nile Falls makes for a breathtaking view.

The Blue Nile Falls create a utopia for the cows grazing on the hill.


 
Built by the Portuguese, this 17th century footbridge crosses the Blue Nile below the Falls.

One generation pours for another.


 
They make 20 liters of beer at a time in these ancient pots.

Priests inside the dining and drinking hall share homemade beer in the centuries old tradition of Christian priests everywhere.


 
Inside Kidane Mihiret, a priest reviews daily receipts.

The 18th century king, complete with his armory, restored Kidane Mihiret and is one of several patrons immortalized inside Saint Mary’s Church


 
Saint John sucks from his dead mother’s breast and then miraculously is able to feed from an antelope – a 16th century fresco inside the church at Kidane Mihiret.

Cherubs grace the door moldings leading to the holiest part of the church sanctioned for celibate priests only.


 
Saint Mary looking down with great pity on those subjected to Hell – a 16th century fresco inside the church at Kidane Mihiret.

Centuries old religious artifacts and silver crowns, donated by emperors, are housed at the Church of Saint Mary at Kidane Mihiret.


 
A priest at Kidane Mihiret, one of the few monasteries allowing female visitors, shows us ancient icons and bibles written in Ge’ez.

Small motorboats – with powerless motors – take visitors to the island monasteries around Bahar Dar.


 
PAIGE'S NOTES
 
24 Sep 2000 – Bahar Dar with palms, green leafy trees and bushes of red, yellow, purple and orange flowers is quite lovely. I kept wondering if all those horrible Russian towns we saw in Siberia would look better, like this even, if flowers surrounded the dismal, concrete architecture.

Walking down a main boulevard lined with flowering trees, I passed many looking quite shocked to see a foreigner enjoying a stroll through their city. Little girls tried to sell me fruit and several young children held their hands in the universal ‘give money’ gesture. The ones who knew a little English muttered ‘hello’ and ‘you’. One teenage boy kept screaming ‘F___ you Mother F_____’ and ‘I'm going to kill you’. For some reason I didn't feel threatened, since I figured these were the few English words he knew. I just hated knowing someone, or something, taught the boy such offensive phrases. I tried to enter the university grounds but a guard stopped me – still the old mentality of ‘no’ being the easiest answer to everything. A little girl around six years old followed me for a few minutes continually calling me ‘mister’. Hearing the sound of water, I looked up to a massive water tank with an enormous water leak falling to the ground offering showers to the hot children playing underneath and enjoying simple pleasures.

 

VIDEO
 
  Blue Nile Falls
AUDIO
 
  Begging (Paige)
  Oh, so much potential, but … (Paige)
  Three month old TV news (Jim)
  Lush countryside (Jim)
  Blue Nile Falls and area (Jim)