Aladdin's adventure in Cairo, Egypt


Tuesday 11th of April 2006 and it took us about 30 minutes to get to the port of Suez. First we Aladdin's adventure in Suezwent through the immigration (we waited in the mini van while our Agent did the paper work) and then we had to go through the custom.

First an x-ray machine Yet another Smiley on www.aladdin.stthat look like it was thousands of years old.
- HEY, are we sure it wasn't the old Egyptians invented the X-Ray?

Yes, I just had to ask when I saw this piece of equipment that must have been around since long before the X-Ray was known to the rest of the world. I also took a picture they told me it was not allowed to take pictures. By then it was too late, I already had all the pictures I needed.

Aladdin's adventure in Suez
The X-Ray adventure

Aladdin's adventure in Suez
The custom hall in Suez

After the X-Ray adventure we had to trot across this huge storehouse with our entire luggage. There was another custom officer checking our luggage and we were all happy when we could go back in to the van. No one of us had been sleeping for very long and we were tired.
- Cairo and a nice sleep on the hotel next!
Yeah - yeah, that’s what we thought. We ended up at the agent's office taking some copies of our seaman's books. I tried to take a picture of the van when the Agent told me it wasn't allowed.
- What!!??
- This is a military area and no photos allowed.
- Ah, that explains the “no picture policy” back at the custom.
I had thought that that there could be no secret with the old x-ray machine back at the custom. Maybe they were embarrassed over the old equipment and that explained the “no picture policy”. I was not even allowed to walk down to the Sues Canal, there were soldiers guarding everywhere.

Aladdin's adventure in Suez
I had some pictures of Suez before leaving

Aladdin's adventure in Suez
And yet again, I found a reason to be very happy that I lived in Bangkok

Aladdin's adventure in Suez
The road to Cairo pass through nothing

Aladdin's adventure in Suez
The road to Cairo pass through nothing

Aladdin's adventure in Suez
Suddenly! We passed a bush

It took us maybe 90 minutes to go from Suez to Cairo and we were very happy to reach the hotel even though it looked like a dump. I was very tired and it had not been possible to sleep in the Concorde El Salam Hotel Cairovan. We entered the hotel and I was Aladdin's adventure in Cairo, Egyptchocked, arriving and it looked like a dump. This turned out to be a very nice hotel in Cairo.

While waiting for my key I caught sight of a bar with some bread baskets. I went over:
- We're not open yet, but you can have breakfast in the restaurant, they told me.

There were 4 or 5 restaurants on the hotel, but only one was open when we arrived. Well, hotel breakfast, I had to go for a look and when I saw the bread I just had to order tea. I like bread and I had not seen bread for 4 months, except for the evening ashore eating in Santos.

I also had sausages, fried with pimiento, I love pimento and it tasted very good. I will remember this for my own home cooking. Cut pimento and fry it with the meat and you has a winner.

I was soon of to my room and my bed. Wake up call ordered for 13:45. Our driver will pick up me and Assistant Electrician at 14:00 for transport to the pyramids. The original plan was to go at 13:00, but we need the extra sleep. I guess there will be some beer drinking tonight so an extra hour of power nap is needed.

Concorde El Salam Hotel Cairo
Concorde El Salam Hotel Cairo

Concorde El Salam Hotel Cairo
Concorde El Salam Hotel Cairo

Our driver picked us up at the hotel at 2 o'clock and we were happy that we spent the extra hour sleeping. We had planned to go at 13:00 but when we reached the hotel I suggested that we should go at 14:00.
- I'm very tired and I think I need some more sleep, I said.

I had been up for almost 24 hour and I was very tired. We were still tired at 14:00 but we needed Concorde El Salam Hotel Cairoto get on our way, we didn't want to miss this opportunity to see the pyramids. The rest of the off signers would leave at 23:00 as their flight was 3 o'clock in the morning.

It was a 1,5 hours ride to the pyramids. Cairo is a darn big city, this 1,5 hour was within the city limit all the time. The driver told us that there was living 7,2 millions people in Cairo. And that's the people they know of, most likely much more people.

We could see the pyramids from the highway and I was looking for the sphinx but I could not see
Sphinx

noun
1) (Sphinx) Greek Mythology a winged monster of Thebes, having a woman's head and a lion's body. It propounded a riddle about the three ages of man, killing those who failed to solve it, until Oedipus was successful, whereupon the Sphinx committed suicide.

• an ancient Egyptian stone figure having a lion's body and a human or animal head, especially the huge statue near the Pyramids at Giza.

• an enigmatic or inscrutable person.
the Sphinx. Strange, the sphinx should be close to the pyramids.

Well, I guess we will see it sooner or later. We stopped to buy beer on the way, but they only had alcohol free beer. Well, a bottle of water and a Diet drink for me and a Fanta for Assistant Electrician. We were looking forward to this adventure and the spirit was high

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Our Assistant Electrician - On the way to see the pyramids and the Sphinx

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
We pass something on the way to the pyramids and the Sphinx

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
We pass several shanty towns

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Crossing the Nile?

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Crossing the Nile?

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
We can see the pyramids in the horizon

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
We can see the pyramids

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
We can see the pyramids

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
We can see the pyramids

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
We can see the pyramids

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
We can see the pyramids
But where is the Sphinx?

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Approaching the pyramids
But still no sign of the Sphinx

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Almost there

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
A tyre shop

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Giza

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Riding a donkey

We bought a 40 Egyptian Pound (about 7-8 dollars) ticket and we entered. Hmm, the sphinx was very small comparing to what I have thought it should be. On all the pictures it looks like the sphinx is very big. Look at the picture on the ticket, or the sphinx below. Then compare with my right hand picture of the sphinx with the people around.

We spent about one hour walking around taking pictures and looking at the girls. Well, as usually there were people coming up to us wanting a picture together with us. Hmm, there was a girl from Yemen asking if she could be on a picture with me. Well, what can I say? Her boyfriend was hovering around jealous, well, this is what happens when Mr. Handsome is in town.

Now we have seen the pyramids and it was nice. The only disappointment was the sphinx and all the screaming sellers trying to sell souvenirs, but that was expected. But it was a nice experience and the best thing is that if I ever end up in Egypt again I don't have to go through the hassle to go see the pyramids again and I can relax doing funnier things.


Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt


Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
My ticket to the pyramids in Giza

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Here we have the Sphinx
I was disappointed, I had expected a huge thing. Well, all the pictures we see of the Sphinx are from an angle that makes it look huge with the pyramid in the back. But with a few tourists at the Sphinx it look very small

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Our Assistant Electrician, not overly excited

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
The Sphinx

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
The Sphinx

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
The Sphinx

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
The Sphinx

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
The Sphinx

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
The Sphinx - And we can see that Cairo is ending at the foot of the pyramids

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
One of the pyramids in Giza

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
One of the pyramids in Giza

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Same pyramid in Giza

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Sign on the pyramid

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Sign on the pyramid

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Sign on the pyramid

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Cairo

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
They are closing and the guards chase us out of there

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
They are closing and the guards chase us out of there

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
A couple from Oman, I think, want a picture of our hero

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
This is as exciting as it gets around here

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
A last picture before we leave

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
A last picture before we leave

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Drinking beer watching the guards chasing the tourists with jeeps

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Drinking beer watching the guards chasing the tourists with jeeps

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt


Well, the pyramids were huge and all the running around had made us thirsty, even though we didn't climb the darn thing. We walked back towards the exit, the clock was around 1600 something and we discovered that they had closed the gate. We thought it was sarnge .....

Jesus Christ, I'm lying in my bed at Concorde El Salam Hotel Cairo with a hangover force 9,7 writing this. Well, let me tell you that I'm happy that the English Teacher isn't here to correct my spelling. The last word was supposed to be strange, well (again), I give it a new try:


We thought it was strange that they closed the place while there still was daylight. The only thing open was the cafe outside the area. We decided to ask if they had beer. We could see that they had wine bottles on the counter and we ordered 2 beers and relaxed while watching the sun set over the pyramids.

Can you see the people coming down from the pyramids on the right side of the above picture? As mentioned before it was closing time and the guards drove behind the people honking all the way down. Like a sheep dog, well (there it was again), the Sheppard was driving the cheep dog. What a bunch of f.. morons! Do they really think that the people will start to run just because these foockers are honking their horns. They have travelled halfway around the world to see the pyramids so they are going to stay as long as possible. Never mind the honking.

Hmm, 2 beers became more than a few and we were tipsy when our driver came looking for us. I Yet another Smiley on www.aladdin.stbought 4 cans of beers at the bar for the ride back to the hotel and we left for an Yet another Smiley on www.aladdin.st hopefully exciting night life in Cairo.

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
We're leaving the pyramids behind

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Tourists stops a taxi

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Convenient store

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Another exciting convenient store

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Selling stuff everywhere

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Most likely the last I ever see of the pyramids

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Passing houses on the way to our hotel

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Now it is time to find a rest room

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Crossing the Nile again?

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Crossing the Nile again?

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
Cairo, city or desert?

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
We stop to look for beer

Aladdin's adventure with the pyramids and the Sphinx in Cairo, Egypt
We made it back to the hotel

We made one pit stop on the way back, I was about to die of thirst at the same time I was about to piss myself in the back seat. A few too many beers and no restroom. We Concorde El Salam Hotel Cairopassed something that looked like a store with both beer and rest room. We could use the toilet, but they didn't sell any beer.

So we had to survive the remaining of our journey back to the hotel without beer. It was time for dinner when we came back to the hotel.

And a full days of adventure had made me hungry and inspired of the breakfast I ordered a plate of fried pimento and a few more Concorde El Salam Hotel Cairobeers while waiting for the food.

After the dinner we decided to try a water pipe. I don't know what it is, it looks like charcoal and that is charcoal with strawberry taste. I took one or two drag and I can't say that I liked it, seriously, what’s the big deal with smoking this water pipe? But when in Egypt you do what the Egyptians do.

Concorde El Salam Hotel Cairo
Trying the water pipe

Concorde El Salam Hotel Cairo
Trying the water pipe

Concorde El Salam Hotel Cairo
Dinner at the hotel

Concorde El Salam Hotel Cairo
A beer at the hotel bar before going to explore Cairo's night life

After the dinner I went for a tour around Cairo with one of the drivers from the hotel, we were looking for the night life. But we were too early, everything opened at 23:00 so I returned to the Yet another Smiley on www.aladdin.sthotel. And as the driver had been driving like he had stolen the car I could feel that the motion sickness started to affect me.

And don't forget that we hadn't had any real sleep for a long time. So I was off to bed very early and I don't think I missed very much, Cairo's night life is something I most likely can live without having experienced.

+++++++++++++++
Wednesday 12th of April 2006
and I woke up at 04:00 with a hangover force 9,7. It was terrible even though I was happy that we went to the pyramids yesterday. I can imagine how I would have felt if we had missed the Pyramids and the Sphinx. This was a once in a life time opportunity. Believe me, so this was really what we call a once in a Concorde El Salam Hotel Cairolife time opportunity.

My flight is at 3 o'clock tomorrow morning so I won't leave the hotel until midnight and I can spend the whole day in bed. After drinking all the water in the Yet another Smiley on www.aladdin.stmini bar I called room service and they brought me 3 litres of water.

I tried to write something on my web page about the adventure at the pyramids yesterday. But that project crashed as I could not write as we can see example on above. I was just about to throw myself out of the window when I managed to fall asleep.

I woke up at 10 o'clock feeling a little better. Actually I felt so good I thought it would be a good idea to leave the room for a while. I have heard that the Egyptian Museum should be nice.

I asked downstairs if they had any recommendations. They thought it would be nicer to go on a cruise on the River Nile. Yes, a cruise definitely sounded more exciting than a museum. So I decided to go for the cruise.
- OK, I need to eat a little something first.
- You can eat on the boat, they said.
- Of course, a 5 star dining experience would suite me fine right now

And to make it even better they had a car to take me to the Cruise Ship. Yes, I was expecting a cruise ship with a 5 star restaurant where I would have a SEA VIEW meal extravaganza listening to a band playing hits from the 40's. And of course surrounded by French Detectives that I was going to call Monsieur Parrot and other exotic people.

I was delirious with expectations and we were off with smoking and screaming tires.

Aladdin's cruise on the River Nile with Nile Queen 2
On the way to the cruise on the River Nile

Aladdin's cruise on the River Nile with Nile Queen 2
On the way to the cruise on the River Nile

Aladdin's cruise on the River Nile with Nile Queen 2
On the way to the cruise on the River Nile

Aladdin's cruise on the River Nile with Nile Queen 2
On the way to the cruise on the River Nile

It took us about 30-45 minutes to drive to the cruise ship and that's even though I had spent the whole trip in the back seat pushing our driver to drive faster. I was a little thirsty and I could not wait to get on board the cruise ship and the bar for a soda water. Enjoying an ice cold soda water while mingling with interesting people. I was in for a surprise!


Aladdin's cruise on the River Nile with Nile Queen 2


Aladdin's cruise on the River Nile with Nile Queen 2
Is this a cruise jetty?
By now I had several alarms and light going off in my mind

Aladdin's cruise on the River Nile with Nile Queen 2
Nile Queen 2
What the foock is this? Where are the big bar and restaurant.
Monsieur Parrot is not to be seen around here. And he had never been seen around here either!

Aladdin's cruise on the River Nile with Nile Queen 2
Leaving the “cruise jetty” behind on board Nile Queen 2

Aladdin's cruise on the River Nile with Nile Queen 2
What the foock happened with my exotic Nile cruise? Passing garbage with Nile Queen 2

Aladdin's cruise on the River Nile with Nile Queen 2
I don't think the water is very clean in the River Nile

Aladdin's cruise on the River Nile with Nile Queen 2
Did I get out of bed for this? Did I pay for this?

Aladdin's cruise on the River Nile with Nile Queen 2
Did I get out of bed for this? Did I pay for this?
Click HERE for bigger picture

Aladdin's cruise on the River Nile with Nile Queen 2
Did I get out of bed for this? Did I pay for this?
Click HERE for bigger picture

Aladdin's cruise on the River Nile with Nile Queen 2
Did I get out of bed for this? Did I pay for this?

Aladdin's cruise on the River Nile with Nile Queen 2
I was soon asking them to take me back

Aladdin's cruise on the River Nile with Nile Queen 2
I had enough

Aladdin's cruise on the River Nile with Nile Queen 2
We're soon back at the “cruise jetty”
What the Yet another Smiley on www.aladdin.st did I just experience?

Aladdin's adventure with Nile Queen 2 on the River Nile


Yet another Smiley on www.aladdin.stI stepped on board Nile Queen 2 after much hesitations. I was really thinking about going back to my bed at Concorde El Salam Hotel Cairo. I was at least to say disappointed, I had painted a picture of this adventure in my mind and this was not even close.

The restaurant turned out to be a little boy running away buying a bottle of water (they didn't have any Diet Drinks) before we left. And I was for sure not going to eat anything on Yet another Smiley on www.aladdin.stthis boat, it was at least to say shabby. They had tried to get an Oriental/ Arabic feeling by putting carpets and pillows on the roof top. Only God know when they had washed them last time.

I was afraid that the pillows and carpets would crawl away jumping over board. Or to attack me, as they look to be alive. I was alone on the small boat and they asked for 100 US for a 2 hours trip.
- I give you 50, I said.
He accepted immediately and I realized that the normal prize should have cost about 5 US. Well, never mind. We had been on the way for about 20 minutes and we had passed countless PET bottles and plastic bags. This exotic “River Cruise” was nothing but a disappointment. I don't know if it was because of the disappointment or the garbage along the River Nile but I was struck by the hangover again. Now it was almost a full force 10 and the guide looked at me.
- Good?!
- Go back, I said.

I really wanted to go back to the hotel and my bed and I asked them to speed up. I moved closer to the side, stand-by to throw up. I was really feeling bad and I decided never to drink beer again. It's strange, you know how you are going to feel and you are still drinking that beer. Well, the River Nile disappointment came as a total surprise.

Aladdin's cruise on the River Nile with Nile Queen 2
Finally, on the way back to the hotel

Aladdin's cruise on the River Nile with Nile Queen 2
Finally, on the way back to the hotel

Aladdin's cruise on the River Nile with Nile Queen 2
Finally, on the way back to the hotel

Aladdin's cruise on the River Nile with Nile Queen 2
Finally, on the way back to the hotel

Aladdin's cruise on the River Nile with Nile Queen 2
Finally, on the way back to the hotel

And yes, it was nice to finally come back to the hotel where they had started to serve lunch. Yet another Smiley on www.aladdin.stBREAD! I was soon sitting at a table with a pot of tea and some fresh bread in front of Concorde El Salam Hotel Cairome. The hotel will be my best memory from Cairo. And the food, of course, leaving Pegasus behind and all food would have been a memory for life. I will never forget the 60 year old AB crying because he was hungry and I had to go steal food for him.

So the hotel and food will be a happy memory from Cairo. Of course, it was nice to have seen the pyramids, but just because NOW I HAVE SEEN THEM and not because it was something spectacular to see.

I enjoyed my lunch and when I finished I returned to my room and I spent the rest of the day in my room. My flight is tomorrow morning at 03:00 so I have to leave the hotel at midnight something. So I had some hours to kill, but this was a 5 star hotel and the room was very nice so no problem. There are movies to watch on the telly.

Concorde El Salam Hotel Cairo
I might have had some tea as well

Before leaving Egypt I want to wish you all a very Happy Easter and I will soon see you again. I will upload this before leaving Egypt and now I will return to my bed and my hangover.


+++++++++++++++
Thursday 13th of April 2006
and they dropped me at the airport and as soon as I had stepped out from the car there was a guy next to me
- What flight?
- KLM
- This way. Your bags
- Nice!

Turned out to be a beggar, well, every one turned out to be beggars. At the check-in, Custom and Cairo International Airportimmigration. Even the security asked for money. After the immigration I started to ask for money and souvenirs
- You give me money and souvenirs!

It will be nice to leave. My last picture from Cairo was of the TV in the departure hall. It was just a blur and I was wondering why they bothered to show this. Maybe because they have TVs at other international airports.

But this was only a pointless noise and annoyance. Well, Kalmar next where I will attend a IMDG (Dangerous Cargo) course 24th and 28th of April. So hang on, this will be exciting!


                  

OK, it has come to my knowledge that we have senior citizens visiting my web page. How hard can it be? So it's not very easy for them to see the blue coloured links to the next page.
Jiffy (also jiff)

noun [in SING.] informal a moment: we'll be back in a jiffy.

ORIGIN late 18th cent.: of unknown origin.

So as you understand, in a jiff pretty much depends on your internet.
So I put a “Next” button here and I hope that there isn't any problem to understand how to use that one.
So just CLICK the “Next” button on your left hand side and you will be on the next page in a jiff!

Marunong ka mag-tagalog? Walang problema! Magpunta sa kabilang pahina pindutin ang “NEXT” button sa itaas

Faites vous parlez le français? Pas de problème! Pour arriver à la page suivante faites s'il vous plaît un déclic le bouton “Next” ci-dessus!

Haga usted dice el español? No hay problema! Ver la siguiente página sólo hacer clic el botón “Next” encima!

Farla parla l'italiano? Non problemi! Per vedere la prossima pagina lo scatto per favore giusto Il bottone “Next” sopra

Sprechen sie Deutsch! Kein problem! Wenn Sie die folgende Seite sehen wollen gerade klicken der Knopf “Next” oben!

คุณพูดภาษาไทยได้ไหม ไม่มีปัญหา ถ้าคุณต้องการไปหน้าถัดไป ให้กดปุ่ม “Next” ข้างบนนี้

Вы говорите по-русски? Просто нажмите синюю кнопку "Next" с левой стороны и Вы моментально переместитесь на следующую страницу!

E ni Svenskar och inte förstår Engelska så ska ni skämmas. J och Björn, med det menar jag inte att alla mina stavfel ska ältas varje gång vi träffas.

Flag of Skåne / Skånska flaggan Well, the flag of Skåne, just a BONUS flag.


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