Monday 15 December 2008

13th December 08

Date: 13th December 08
Location: Cairo, Egypt
Weather: Cold morning, cloudy afternoon, cold night! 26°c
Status: A little concerned but going west in preparation….

Up this morning in the cold with a rumbling belly, damn Egyptian water! We packed up our camp, paid the bills and said our goodbyes to our kind hosts then headed to the pyramids for a look around.

I’ve been to them before and remember it from 20 years ago as a place of massive hassles from touts and a grubby reception area and its good to see that in those 20 years nothing has changed! Yes they’ve got a new ticketing area but there’s litter everywhere, broken wooden platforms leading down to the tomb rooms and still the persistent camel and horse salesmen. You think the government would realise the importance of this, one of the seven wonders of the world, and make the changes need to make it an incredible tourist attraction…there’s enough visitors to pay for it!

We visited the usual areas and had the photos in front of the sphinx etc, bought some tat and wound up the salesmen as much as we could! Then hit the road out of town towards the Mediterranean to complete the second side of the virtual triangle which forms Africa. The road was great tarmac and we arrived at Alexandria’s outskirts just as the sun was setting to the west and thinking we could find a beachside camp we carried on along the coast.

Oh Egypt why do you do it to yourself? Every metre of coastline along the Red Sea and again here along the Mediterranean is either developed or under development by monstrous holiday resorts which ruin the coastline and don’t even allow you a view of the ocean….we had to drive on for another 100kms trying to find anywhere to stop but after a couple of hours were totally defeated and pulled into a petrol station by El Alamein and pitched the tent for the night!

A useful stopping ground however as the military cemetery is only a km away from here which I’ll visit in the morning. I’m now sitting in the truck awaiting a phone call from Sami to confirm the next steps for our Libya visa and am slightly worried. Oh please can this part go according to plan I really want to get back for Christmas now and to be able to take Bre around showing her off to my friends and visiting some exciting places with her….thank you whoever’s listening.

End of day location: El Alamein, Egypt
Distance covered: 300kms

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