Sunday, October 26, 2008

The night I got sick in Egypt

After a pleasant sleep in I set out to wander the streets of Cairo and make a few essential purchases. What a city. There is nothing quite like wandering the hustling, bustling environment of Cairo. My friend, Rebecca, told me in Greece that Cairo is somewhat like the inside of an ant colony, and that’s a pretty apt and accurate description. It’s organised chaos at its finest.

Any person you think is a madman, is actually completely sane. Somehow – everything works!

I did my usual thing of getting ‘lost’, except this time I genuinely screwed myself over. It took me over an hour to find my way back to the hotel (after I was ready to return), and I didn’t even walk that far.

I was also enticed by a few of the store owners, but didn’t get so roped in, that I was stuck in the store. Plenty of  ‘la shukran’, which means ‘no thank you’. I was actually just out to buy some small things like sanitary wipes and bottled water on little shopping trips. I end up buying a massive bottle of water (which a policeman stole from me, anyway), and I got lost straight after that.  So I was wandering, mildly aimlessly, around the streets of Cairo. Oh year, I forgot to mention, for those who didn’t know – Egypt is hot.

At last, I made my way back. Then that night, I went on a dinner cruise up and down the Nile (not all of it). What a brilliant night that was! It started off with a buffet Egyptian dinner which was extremely impressive. I don’t think I’ve ever been served so much cooked liver, except by Dad. There was also a tasty dip and then it was followed by an unreal dessert.

We moved up to the deck a couple of times and I chatted with some people I met from the States. Then the on-board entertainment started. There had been a singer and band at dinner. By band, I mean a guy on a Casio keyboard who wasn’t even playing. He sang, but was totally key-syncing. That’s a new word I made up…creative, huh?

BUT. The real show was the belly and Sufi dancing, accompanied by a band and percussionists. Man, it was so fun, particularly the sufi dancing. If you ever get the chance to check out Sufi dancers – do it, especially if it’s more authentic.

Overall, it was a thoroughly enjoyable evening, even though I may have contracted food poisoning from that particular meal. Hooray.

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