Gator Temple

A floating bazaar
A floating bazaar

We bought our galibayahs in the ship’s bazaar, which was a welcome relief to the overwhelming souks… sensory overload… I found a bright red one with traditional Egyptian designs and Beck ended up with white (no bargaining in the ship bazaar)! He also had jewelery, scarves, and typical mementos.

Edfu temple of Horace, we got on the right bus this time! Very crowded ‘new’ Greek temple. Faces of Gods were chiseled out. Then we sailed to Kom Ombo (small mountain of Gold). It is a temple for the crocodile and falcon Gods. They had mummified gators, but we didn’t see them. They would keep one in a well and keep it well fed so that the rest of the gators in the Nile would leave people alone. They also used well water levels to determine taxes (high=high, low=low), which I thought was neat. Also neat was Amun (sun) = Amen. Then through the market. I held a cobra with a snake charmer. At first I thought I would just take a picture with him but then he put the snake around my and made me hold it! Scary! Beck slept through dinner and father slept through the belly dancer (who was really bad – I watched the zill player the whole time) and the whilring dirvishes. One more note, on the way back, I went and sat outside for a while, I saw some uncovered ruins, we also saw some ancient graves at the sandstone quarry (maybe limestone?).

This was the day we were actually able to go up on the sun deck and take a nap. Otherwise we were always too busy. How beautiful sailing to Upper Egypt (which is actually in the south). Dunes, tombs, ruins, villages, donkeys, camels, children swimming in the nile, stone escarpments, palm groves, women washing their laundry by the river were all common sights. All of a sudden we heard a rucus by the side of the ship – hollering and shouting. Several villagers rowed out in their rowboats to sell their wares! A floating bazaar. So – they started hurling their wares up to the top of the ship ( at least 4 or 5 stories). On even landed on my head! Linton bargained for his two piece galabayah (vest and coat) and got a very good price. So over the edge he sent the money!! He aimed for the moving boats, amazing! Beck and I chatted on the deck during the evening.

Our guide from the boat was keeping us very busy. He was very serious about educating us about the history, the hieroglyphics, and the pharaohs. He really was excellent. Strict, stand offish, but dedicated to his job. He had high expectations for us and quizzed us over and over, hammering home his points. How to recognize royalty, the reason the civilization collapsed, the cosmology/mythology of antiquity – we learned it all. Amr was excellent and a natural teacher. Our group name was King Tut, but Amr being a purist always called his King Toot.

Funny: metal detectors are everywhere (as are men with AK47s) and you must walk through them. However, they are always going off because the alarm is set on high and not a person cares. How silly – some aren’t even plugged in. Another funny note is that our guide Amr says OH SIGH RRUS instead of Osiris.

With the cobra
With the cobra

Click here for all of our pictures.

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