The Nile River has been the source of life for Egyptians since ancient times. Until the Aswan Dam was built in the nineteen-sixties, only four per cent of Egypt was cultivated. More of the land has since been reclaimed, but now that same dam holds back the rich silt that fed the land for centuries, and farmers must use fertilizers they can ill afford to buy
A great many of the country’s inhabitants live and work on the narrow strip of fertile land on either side of this river that flows four thousand miles from its source in East Africa to empty into the Mediterranean Sea.
For these people, life is hard, with few modern amenities, or machines to assist in cultivation. To see how tightly the vast desert presses up against the river, is to understand the fragile nature of their simple lives, carved out from the riverbanks, one small plot at a time.
Traveling From Aswan to Cairo on the Nile becomes a trip back in time. Life seems little changed from years past. Graceful feluccas glide beside simple fishing boats; children frolic at water’s edge as children always will, and the family animals are at home drinking deeply of these life-giving waters.
It is easy, here, to imagine oneself at another point in time….
Egypt is renowned worldwide for its many ancient monuments, but what impressed me most about the country was the tenacity and ingenuity of its hardy inhabitants who have made their home in this stark and often inhospitable land. I offer them my praise and my admiration…
I'm linking this post to the wonderful Weekend Reflections meme, hosted admirably by James at Newton Daily Photo. To see reflections from around the world, just click on the link below...