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Egypt

This category contains 9 posts

Sunrise on Mt. Sinai

While all of you were likely enjoying a turkey feast for Thanksgiving, I ate grilled chicken and kushari in the Sinai. The next morning, we awoke at 1:30am (!) to begin our hike up Mt. Sinai so that we could reach the summit by sunrise. For those who know your bible lore, Mt. Sinai is … Continue reading

Riding Donkey to the Valley of the Kings

I can honestly say that we’ve tried just about every form of transportation on this trip, with the notable exception of bicycles (which would be ridiculously stupid on Egyptian roads, but you do see them). We’ve traveled via bus, van, train, boat, felucca, horse-drawn carriage, and camel. And yesterday, we took a trip to the … Continue reading

Traveling via police convoy

There are many parts of Egypt, Upper Egypt in particular (and remember, Upper Egypt is actually southern Egypt), in which travel restrictions apply to all foreigners. After a number of terrorist incidents resulted in the deaths of tourists in the 1990s, Egypt was considered a hazardous destination and other countries advised their citizens against traveling … Continue reading

Marley & me

Bob Marley seems to be an uninvited guest on our travels. I’m not sure I understand the local fascination with him, but so far I’ve seen several Bob Marley flags, CDs, and a boat named the Bob Marley. We took a felucca ride on the Nile yesterday and whose face was painted on the hull? … Continue reading

On the Nile to Kom Ombu

I would like to say that we are roughing it at the moment, but life on the boat has been incredibly relaxing. Thankfully, we dock at stops along the way to get a taste of the towns and the sites, but much of our day is spent lounging on the deck and observing life on … Continue reading

Traffic!

I’ve been to a lot of countries with hair-raising traffic, but Egypt might just take the cake. My guide book says that riding a bike here is tantamount to suicide, and now I understand. Aside from the double (and sometimes triple)-parked cars along the sidestreets, the main thoroughfares are a pulsating stream of honking, weaving … Continue reading

The call of the muezzin

I’ve discovered that I really like the sound of the muezzin calling the faithful to prayer. The sound has a peaceful quality to it that I find soothing. I imagine it would be easy to live here without a watch and instead keep time according to the sonorous melody of the muezzin’s voice, which echoes … Continue reading

Asalaamu aleikum from Cairo

The travel gods, fickle deities that they are, both giveth and taketh away. On a packed flight to JFK, I was seated with one passenger who was very territorial about the armrests. The other passenger in my row slept for most of the flight, head thrown back, mouth agape, and lightly snoring; then upon waking … Continue reading

Not sleeping on a sleeper train

After exploring the city of Alexandria, which is three hours north of Cairo, we are on a sleeper train to Luxor. Surprisingly the train is on time, because we hear that it is notorious for considering its schedule more of a “guideline,” give or take four hours, as opposed to an actual schedule. I haven’t … Continue reading

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