Burt goes to EGYPT November 2006
Another rainy day at Abu Simbel anyhow. This is Hesham who was our Tour Director, anyhow. He saw to all our needs, anyhow. Stupid question our tour guide was asked, "How long is an Egyptian woman pregnant?" He answered 2 months and was believed. He related a story of another woman who on the entire Egyptian tour thought she was in Israel, even used Israeli money. He questioned wasn't seeing the pyramids a clue that she was in Egypt?
This temple needed to be moved when the Aswan dam was built, can you imagine moving this? Our Tour Directors view was that Queens are fit to rule, he was all for equality as long as women do not drive.
The view from atop the Aswan dam. Prior to its building Egypt was subject to regular floods, now it provides about 30% of their electricity
The ever present toilet (W.C.=water closet), notice the blue leg of a man. He was there to provide about 3 feet of toilet paper additionally you had to pay him 1 Egyptian pound (18 cents). Well worth it when you had to go.
This is a typical Egyptian. An expert at cheating and ripping off tourists. The only good thing about him is at least he fed his horse. The tour company STOPPED using horse taxis because the drivers barely fed their horses so much so their ribs were showing. I took this taxi with Eric and Darby. He promised us our ride would be 20 pounds for ALL of us. When we returned he wanted 40 pounds for EACH of us. Prior to returning his English was terrible, however when we engaged in argument his English drastically improved. Eric agreed to pay the swindler 100 pounds but I wanted to get the tourist police involved. If the Aswan tourist bureau sees this, get us our money back, this is a wanted man In talking with a fellow teacher who lived in Egypt for a year the man above was not uncommon and this teacher and his wife hated Egypt. He said Egyptians cheated AND stole. His wife could not even jog without security. My teacher friend is fairly laid back EXCEPT when it concerns Egypt. (see the Egyptian girl on the last page who hates Egypt)
To almost every attraction you want to see you have to pass through the bazaar where vendors assail you from every direction. Making eye contact is a sure fire way to be besieged
Taxi sand, Egyptian style, no horsing around here
We stopped at a number of these high priced (and fixed price) businesses. One of the main draws was the clean FREE toilet but the women on the tour found many ways to spend hundreds of dollars on perfumes that were advertised to cure all kinds of physical ills. Our tour director received a 10% commission
Egypt is 90% desert. Look at the river beds, the only problem is no water has flowed in them for thousands of years. But still perfectly preserved. No one pees behind a bush, there is no bush.
Cairo, notice the sparkling clean air
Well as you can see the air can get a little cleaner. One thing I noticed is police cars with lights and siren rarely cause anyone to actually move over and yield the right of way. The streets have lines to mark lanes but no one follows them so they are mostly for decoration. There are NO pedestrian cross walks. You risk your life, like crossing the S.E. Expressway at rush hour.
Clearly no terrorist could overcome these guys (photo by Nicole Rost)
No parking on the streets, pedestrians take their chances (photo by Nicole Rost)
I got locked out of my room, how the door chain managed to hook itself on while I was outside the room I will never know. The Tour Director (not shown) was the one who showed his skills as a locksmith by getting in.
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