24-Apr-2006 -- With so many confluence points untaken in Ethiopia I thought it would be a formality to tick off a few during my two-months stay. However, nothing fell my way while leading tours in the North, and despite a foray down south to the Bale Mountains, I was left empty handed. It was left to my penultimate day in the country to go in search of one not far from Addis.
The last remaining member of my departing group Grant aka 'the captain', joined me in the quest despite having to catch a plane the same evening. After negotiating a reasonable fee with a taxi, we set off on the main road directly west out of Addis. The supposedly terrible road was in fact pretty good and in many parts recently surfaced and repaired. It took about 3 hours to reach the town of Gīnch'ī, which on the map appears very close to the Confluence. It was in fact about another 10 km drive to get to the nearest point accessible by road, leaving us with a 3 km walk across open fields.
Our walk through the fields caused a considerable herd of children to follow us. Familiar cries of "You, give me Birr!", and "Where are you going?" grew tiresome, so I told them we were walking to Sudan. This had the desired effect, so by the time we reached the Confluence we were alone.
Being in an open area, the site of the Confluence offers good views over the surrounding fields, local settlements and tasty wildlife.
Our journey back proved uneventful, managing to dodge the kids who were surprised to learn Sudan was so close. Grant was able to catch his flight home; the cowboy cabbie made a nice buck, and I finally had an Ethiopian Confluence.