Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Walking like an Egyptian

The recent turmoil in Egypt has had me thinking about my trip to the country a decade ago.

My memories of the trip are of amazing monuments, friendly people, and carefree floating down the Nile.  Quite a contrast to the images I see on the internet or television.

I met my friend in Cairo at the start of the trip and remember feeling perfectly safe walking around the streets of the city at 1am trying to shake off the jetlag.

The pyramids just outside Cairo
Mosque in Cairo
In fact the only violence I encountered on my visit was when I accidentally staked our tour leader Kate's foot while setting up a makeshift loo on the banks of the Nile at sunset.

With its pyramids, tombs and other monuments, few other countries can give you a clearer sense of what everyone was up to five thousand years ago.  It seems like Egypt was the happening hub.

Cruising along the Nile
Church on Mt Sinai
This week I pulled out my photos to take a walk down memory lane, Egypt style.  And I might add that it didn't take very long as it was a time before my first digital camera.

At that stage, I rationed my holiday photos to six rolls of 36 exposure for the three-week trip.  This will make no sense to Gen Y and Z, but what it means is that I have a small but treasured collection of photos to remember my visit by.

Abu Simbel
Abu Simbel
For a country that seems to have been in the tourism game before anyone knew what to call it, the events of the past few years must have seen a significant downturn in Egypt visitor numbers.

In many ways I'm grateful I got to see Egypt during more peaceful times as it seems it might be a while before stability returns once more.

I for one would love to go back, even if it's just to expand my photo collection.

Valley of the Kings, Luxor
Desert road

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