Rambling Robert's Travels

This blog chronicals the travels of myself, Rambling Robert, on my next adventure to South America.

My Photo

I am a world traveller. I do not work as such. I have been homeless and unemployed since 1October 2003. I worked as a chef for 30 years in America.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Aswan, Luxor and the Red Sea

I understand that people make errors and I understand the law of averages. So I reckon that if people make change for you 1000 times they will make an accidental error maybe 30 or 40 times. Lets say 50 times. My understanding of the law of averages is that about 25 times they will give you too much money and 25 times they wont give you enough. Here in Cairo they make an error once in every four times they make change for a foreigner (me) and it is NEVER enough money. I have to count my change everytime or I get ripped off once in every four times!!

So...That being said, Peta and I are walking through a crowded out door market tonight where we bought some cheesy pastries and breadsticks and grapes for the midnight train to Luxor from Cairo. She is fumbling with her purse to give me some money. A few seconds later a guy taps her on the shoulder and hands her some crumpled up money that she dropped without knowing it!! A second later another woman taps her and gives her more of her money...Egyptian Arabs have been some of the nicest friendliest most honest people I have ever met.

Crossing the street in Cairo is like walking through a minefield on acid. There seem to be no traffic laws at all. No one crosses at corners or at crosswalks. People dodging in and out of 4 lanes of traffic. I have a good method. I get behind an Egyptian woman with kids and follow her so she is between me and on-coming traffic so...if the car wants to hit me it has to hit her first. We saw a guy get hit by a car crossing the street in Alexandria. It was not pretty, Not pretty at all.

I fulfilled one of my great ambitions as a traveller tonight when I walked across a bridge over the Nile River. Imagine... The Nile of songs, of poems, of biblical passages, the river that turned to blood when it was struck by the staff of Moses, The river that drains half the continent of Africa.

I stood in the center of the bridge and watched the rapidly moving muddy brown waters of this great river pass beneath my feet. I love my life. I am fulfilling my dreams. Living out my own real life true adventure. What could be better than this? I am like a peaceful budhist Ernest Hemmingway.

Went down to the World famous Cairo Museum today. It is HUGE!! So many rooms filled with all kinds of antiquities from 30 40 50 CENTURIES ago!! Mummies, statues, King Tuts golden death mask, pottery, plates, tools, chariots, rooms full of sphinxs, weapons, coins, papyrus scrolls. UNBELIEVABLE. So much stuff that your mind becomes numb and you just cant take it all in anymore. Fascinating.

I am on page 300 of the Glorius Koran. I aim to read the thing from cover to cover. I have been at it for 3 weeks now. It is slow going!! Not an easy read. All these thees and thous and lots of fire and brimstone.

The Quo'Ran is the main scripture for the Muslim people. Muslims are those who have surrendered to Gods will. The religion is called Al Islam. The muslims are the faithful (fidelis in latin) non muslims are the non faithful (infidelis) If you aint a muslim you is an Infidel.

There is no God but allah and Mohammed is his Prophet
God is Great

That is what they chant from the minarets (towers) of the mosques 5 times a day to call the faithful to prayer. There are 1.2 Billion muslims in the world. They share the same god as the Jews and Christians. The God of Abraham (Ibrahim)
Muhammed was a direct descentdent(he said) of Abraham through his first son Ishmael. The Jews and Christians also believe there is no god but allah and that god is great. After that there are a few differences which cause all hell to break lose!!! It is all about Faith...

"Conscious faith is freedom. Emotional faith is slavery. Mechanical faith is foolishness."-G.I.Gurdjieff

The Quo'Ran is the heart of the Arab world. The heart of the Muslim world. Egypt is about 99% Muslim. To know Egypt I must know the Quo'Ran. I am trying my best but it isnt so easy. Islam in practice is a lot different from Islam in the Quo'Ran. Just like Judiasm and Christianity. All three religions are based on Faith (see above quote from Gurjieff), and all three religions are made up of men and women as followers who follow mechanically. So a lot of wierd stuff goes down in the name of the god of Abraham.

In Egypt they have this great vegetariean (vegan) dish called Koshary. It is two or three shapes of macaroni, layered with rice and lentil beans and crisy fried onions and garbanzo beans and served with a spicy tomatoe sauce on the side. They also serve a hot red sauce on the side that is brewed and botteled in Hell by Satan himself!!!!

I love the food here. Felafel with salad stuff and tahini sauce in a whole wheat peta pocket for 75 piasters (12 US cents) Ful (like Egyptian refried beans)called "Fool" with eggplant(aubergine,berenjena) and tomatoes on a whole wheat peta pocket costs 2 egyptian pounds (30 US Cents).

Luxor is the city you stay in if you want to visit the great tombs of Ramsis and Tempole of Luxor and some other interesting Archeological sites, Like Karnak and Temple of Hutsikunsup(forgive the spelling here it sounds like Hot Chicken Soup!!). Sadly the town is over-run with touts trying to sell everything they can or give you rides on horse drawn carriages or what ever. I feel like a baklava in a room full of flies! It is dirty and dusty and no fun. Stayed two night and now I am in Aswan.

Still un emplouyed or underemployed Egyptian guys everywhere trying to sell you anything they can. Crazy annoying. If you are polite to them they wont leave you alone you must be rude to get rid of them. This sucks. RB told me to write to him when I found a trash can. He was here in 1992 and never saw one. Well I found a trash can but no one uses it. The people litter everywhere. The whole country is one giant trash heap. Why doesnt the government put these un-employed touts to work cleaning up?

Aswan is cool (except for the hustellers). I might go to Abu Simbel tomorrow or the next day to see the great temple. You have to wake up at 3am to get the mini bus convoy at 4 there are only two convoys per day and foreigners arent allowed to go without the convoy. To Protect us from Terrorists. Since 1997 when the terrorists gunned down and killed 60 Europeans at temple of Hot Chicken Soup. So they put you in a convoy to "protect" you. Of course this only lets the terrorists know when you are going and where to ambush you...Duuhhh!!

My hotel has a pool on th roof top terrace/garden and today I am going to rest and relax at the pool. I feel tired from all the train travel and need to relax and recharge my travel batteries. I aint getting any younger you know!!

Well you wouldnt believe my trip from Aswan to Hurghada.
First the 8 oclock bus doesnt exist so I have to get there for the 6 oclock. Which guess what? shows up at 9 oclock. So I wake up at 5 for a 9 oclock bus.
Okay. Well whatever...

So the bus finally gets there and off we go on an 8 hour journey. 2 and a half hours later we break down in a town called Esno which is a real shit hole. We are stuck for SEVEN BLOODY HOURS in this unbelievably filthy-dirty fly and mosquito infested grimy littel Cafe which I swore I wouldnt even have a cup of tea in but eventually had to eat dinner there.

Finally another Upper Egypt Bus company bus comes but it is full up.So I have to ride sitting on the floor. Which is what i did for 6 hours, sitting in front of the toilet. At this point I am really thinking of just getting the next plane to Mexico and quit travelling for a few months!! Oh, The glories of being a traveller, ahhh the joys of Egypt.

Hurghada is okay. I arrived at 2 in the morning and took the first hotel which was nice. Next morning I switched to a nicer place with a Red Sea View balcony and a mini fridge Air Con TV hot water shower all for 50EP for a single. It costs 20EP (3.75US dollars) to crash the beach at a nearby resort but it is worth it because there are chaise lounge chairs, and an Arabian band (no kidding) and a gawwjuss and I mean GAW juss swimming pool as well as a nice spotlessly clean sand beach on the Red Sea. The water is delightful.

I will stay here for a week. I figure to leave on the fast ferry to Sharm el Sheik on Thursday morning. Stay at the beach in Dahab and take a couple of days to Climb Mt Sinai. Something I always wanted to do. Remember what Steve Tyler of Aerosmith sang..
"If I could
I surely would
Stand on the rock
where Moses stood"

Next update from Sinai. Here are two quotes to think about till then.

"Part of someone's being a good Muslim is his leaving alone that which does not concern him."-Abu Hurairah

"For the most part, only the light characters travel. Who are you that have no task to keep you at home?" Ralph Waldo Emerson

Peace and Love
Rambling Robert


Post a Comment

<< Home