Day 32: Luxor-Cairo (10 Oct ‘09) land of the pyramids
Once again at the ridiculous hour of 4am our alarms went off for breakfast and bags at 4:30am and our last few moments in Luxor. We eventually got through both sets of security-one to just get into the airport and the next for the gate (but you could take water through no problem) and our flight was delayed for about ½ hour. We finally hopped a bus to the plane to walk onboard Egypt Air to Cairo where our tour would officially end. You could imagine of course that I slept the whole way and woke up just in time for landing where we had to then go down the stairs, onto a bus to the terminal and wait for luggage-which took a bit of awhile. We said goodbye to some people and hopped in a van with Mayer, Pat (from Denver), James and Louise back to the Santana where this time we got a renovated room and it was literally like being in a completely different hotel. Unfortunate part of the flight was I realized I didn’t have my mobile phone and the last time I had seen it was entering the felucca so I’m under the impression that it’s swimming with the fishes of the Nile as it apparently liked it a lot and wanted to stay.
We said goodbye to Mayer and went to the room. James and Louise left their stuff with us as their flight was late tonight to Athens and then they would be in Mykonos and Santorini for two weeks. We hit the mini mart and the pizza place as Mathew was feeling better but my stomach was still bothering me a bit so I passed on lunch and had some pretzels and Gatorade instead. After lunch we grabbed a taxi to the Pharaonic Village which for all of the Long Islander readers reminded me so much of Bethpage Restoration. For the non-Long Islanders; the Pharaonic Village is this: you wait for an English guide who shows you to a museum with many things of Alexander the Great and his additional developments to Egypt. Then you hop a small boat that is sort of like the Jungle Cruise in Disneyworld (except the driver doesn’t talk he just presses a button and the voice is there); It’s a slow cruise and takes you through the life in Ancient Egypt where you see statues, animatronics and people dressed as the ancients would be showing you their daily life; then you hop off the boat and go through many museums dedicated to King Tut, Anwar Sadat and Nasser and in the end…but of course; it ends in a gift shop. It was kind of cool though to see how rice was made, hieroglyphics carved, copper worked on, fire started, pottery painted and so many other things that again I use in the classroom. We spent a bunch of time there and then hopped a taxi to the pyramids-crazy, right, I mean who says that…“a taxi to the pyramids, please!”
We were there very early for the sound and light show so we walked around and found a café right opposite the pyramids and sat for hours amidst people and some cats to watch the amazing sunset and have some drinks. We watched as the setting sun lit up the sand-ridden sky behind a backdrop of the pyramids of Giza and the sphinx and enjoyed our last night in Cairo. By the time the Sound and Light show came on at 6:30 (well, that was the English version as they do it in many languages) we were exhausted and the show wasn’t doing anything for us. We were looking for flashing lazers and lots of noise or at least sound we could hear and neither happened so we ditched. We went next door to the restaurant (as there was nothing we wanted to eat there) and got fries at KFC and then grabbed a taxi (well, negotiated a price first) back to the hotel so James and Louise could pick up their stuff and head to the airport and we could settle in before leaving the country in the morning. We said goodbye to our newfound friends (hoping to catch up with them again in Melbourne, Australia), repacked and looked for my mobile phone (to no avail) and headed to bed to wake up early once again to head back to London with a 4:45am wake up call for a 7 something flight. Goodbye Egypt…tomorrow London!