Our First Day in Egypt
Flying to Luxor, our Boat and Trip by Curricle Through Luxor
So, the first day is gone. It began this morning at 3 o'clock. The bell beeped the first time there. I stopped the tone twice but than it has been high time. Fast showered and tightened, a small breakfast and the remainders fast rinsed off. Wash implements as the latter packed into the suit-case. More does not really fit into the suit-case. Oh, the tap of the washing machine must also be still closed and in the refrigerator there are still 3 tomatoes, which must into the waste. Tanja starts to hurry me up and carries already the "light" suit-cases to the car, the heavy ones are for me. Now however, it is 4:20 o'clock and we have to be at 5:20 o'clock at the airport in Vienna Schwechat.
The roads are still free and even at the border to Austria we passed the customs very fast. We made those approximately 60 km to the airport in about 45 minutes. A parking lot we found in the 2. row. Thus suit-cases from the car heaved and on the baggage cart packed. It is substantially colder here in Schwechat than with us in Bratislava. I state, Damn..., half-way to the airport that my Mobile is still in the car. Tanja goes further with the luggage cart and I back again, to pick up my mobile (it is also an opportunity for an additional cigarette). Back again we entered the departure building.
What´s that? This queue for Lauda Air? That has to get the tickets within the next 1 1/2 hours? But it worked then nevertheless faster than expected. Even Miles and More miles I got for the flight and my Frequent Traveler Card protects us also to pay over luggage. The bad luck came then, when I wanted to enter with Tanja into the Frequent Traveler Lounge for having breakfast. "Your tickets please" sure, gladly, "I´m sorry, but does not work with charter". Bullsch..., thus back and passing the passport check. Tanja is already completely nervous full of fear fear of the flight. And she wants absolutely still another coffee and a liquor. Only 15 minutes later we could occupy a free seat, however the waitress punished us with ignorance. Now there was only 15 minutes up to the Boarding. Thus risen and to the bar gone. Just help yourself in this service desert is the motto here. Super, already after 5 minutes I have 2 coffees and the Jägermeister for Tanja. Was also really inexpensive, 12.29 Euro.
After coffee and Hornwhiskey it was already time for boarding The queue in front of the security check is also processed and we made it through as fourth. Down in the departure building and the picture usually found in Vienna airport. It is Boarding time, the small lamp flashes however nothing happens. No bus to be seen. We set ourselves and examine the co-travelers with interest. It is represented everything, of the Proll with open shirt and thick chains up to the three grannies, to who one can regard that they were still yesterday with the hairdresser.
There, the bus is coming, everybody jumps up nervously. Why? There will be a seat for everyone in the plane. The boarding starts with a delay of 10 minutes. We still sat. I laughed quiet inwardly, this experience I have made nevertheless here in Vienna already a dozend of times . Finally it continues. When the first bus is filled, it comes again to a hold. No second bus comes. I drive out the waiting period with an additional cigarette, I discovered the smoker's lounge myself. Tanja looked angry ;)
After the cigarette and the course to the premises for small king tigers (rest room), boarding started again. The bus is back and the queue is meanwhile so short that it is not worth to sit down again. Inside of the bus the usual picture. At the entrance it is crowded and in the middle of the bus is enough free space. It worked somehow and we reached the plane, entered the airplane and nobody sits on our places. With delay we started, not without a few admonishments which I caught myself from Tanja, because I did not regard the safety explanations
The flight ran actually quite calm, apart from a few small turbulences and we then landed nevertheless still rather punctually at 12:35 o'clock (one hour due to different timezone). To visa formalities (2 Minuten)und 25 $ per person, in cash for sure, Euros work also, but with Egyptian Pound (LE) there are problems. After registration of the video camera and customs inspection (we had to open only one of 4 suit-cases) we walked to the bus. That we determined actually everywhere, Euro and Dollar were gladly taken, Egyptian Pound nobody wanted.
The sign Taurus was not to be overlooked. Suit-case up to the bus rolled, the Boy, which took the suit-case from my the hand, in order to place it into the bus, given no tip, and then in the heat of Luxor the first cigarette after more than 4 hours lightened. A Second one was not approved.
After approximately 20 minutes by bus through Luxor, honestly said, I am disappointed by the city, we arrived at the ship. We could not see it, it lied 2 others in front of it, over which we had to go, in order to come to our ship. For the luggage we do not have to care, thats done by the staff.
Here are some pics of our boat:
Arabi, our travel guide for the next week, leads us to the 4. Deck into the bar and gives us first notes for the further process. During drawing the cabs by lots Tanja pulls the 309. Is actually no matter, all cabs are identical. At the reception we fetch our key. The suit-cases arrived already and I pity the Boys, that have to bring our suit-cases into our rooms and remove one of the Trollis. Now he has to carry only 55 Kilos.
Our cab is not like that, as one knows it from the dream ship. It is rather appropriately however O.K. The cabinet seizes naturally at the most a fraction of what our suit-cases contained (I now already know: much too much). Thus the only possible decision falls: "the clothes remains in the suit-case!".
Remains also hardly time, the lunch is waiting. No "cuisine" however house man food. After the meal again up into the bar, where Arabi explains again the programme to us , makes tasty for us additional (fakultative) trips and collects the money (25 Euro per person) for the "tip cash".
We book additionally to the trips already booked in Vienna, for this evening a trip by curricle through Luxor (18 euro/person), in Aswan the attendance of the nubian village (20 Euro/P.) and, after long considering, Abu Simbel. Not by plane, by bus. Nevertheless enough expensive (instead of 250 Euro only 100 Euro/p.). What does it matter? Thus back into the cab, fresh made and moved out to the curricle. If one compares it with the costs of a Fiaker in Vienna, then the 36 Euro for 2 1/2 hours were a superspecial friendship offer.
The travel by Luxor was already interesting, particularly the travel through the middle of the Souk (Bazaar). To describe all this would need pages, only as reference point, we have made approximately 100 photos and approx. 30 minutes video were taken up. A small selection of the pictures are below. Back on the ship, into the bed, fast sleep, tomorrow is probably early rises announced, to waking at around 5:30 (in Europe that is 4:30), around 6:30 is departure to the valley of the kings.
September 13, 2002 - Stones, Sand and Grafitti
September 14, 2002 - Karnak und Luxor
September 15, 2002 - Edfu, Kom Ombo, Scenery at Nile and Galabeiaparty
September 16, 2002 - Our fifth day - Philae, Assuan, Obelisk, Souk and Nubian Village
September 17, 2002 - Tanjas Birthday, Abu Simbel, Kitchener´s Island
September 18, 2002 - Our seventh day - Traveling back to Luxor
September 19, 2002 - From Luxor to El Gouna
September 20, 2002 - Relaxing in the Hotel
September 21, 2002 - Snorkeling in the Red Sea
September 22, 2002 - Deserttour
September 23, 2002 - The Yellow Submarine
September 24 and 25, 2002 - Our last two days in Egypt
September 26, 2002 - Return journey with obstacles