Saturday May 30th 2015
thing about the River Nile is it's obviousness. If a
person wanders the coasts of Ethiopia and he or she
looks across the salt sea in a north westerly direction,
none of it looks very pretty or inviting or different.
But the Blue Nile, which meets the White Nile at
Khartoum becomes the Nile River that waters Egypt and
ends up in the Mediterranean. The Blue Nile from it's
source in Lake Tana is no little stream. Nor is the
White Nile with its source in Lake Victoria. Just
pretend Ethiopia is the Land of Cush, and the Blue Nile
the temptation of an Apple.
The idea of
something like boat building being the Apple has for too
long been the subject of polishing. "Look I've built a
floating contrivance so that we can cross Bab el Mendeb"
doesn't have quite the allure for your correspondent as "I
wonder where that river goes." And it would have been a long
trip a great deal of it through deep gorges, and maybe a
waterfall. Bab el Mendeb, The Gateway of Tears, or the
Gateway of Anguish, so named from the legend of the great
numbers who were drowned when an earthquake separated Asia
from Africa. Yes indeed a great deal of Sabean oral history
is confusing, not greatly assisted by the geneticists.