Tuesday, January 29, 2008

December 29-31
Written in Saarbruecken

Just a bit about the end of our Egypt trip.

Philae Temple outside Aswan is in an amazing location, after the Hatshepsut temple, the most beautiful location for a temple we saw. It’s on an island between the two Aswan dams, and was moved there because the island it was originally on was getting flooded. There was a lot of time, energy, and money put into saving some of the these temples from the High Dam. We had to take a boat to get out to the temple, and then got to walk around. It had the usual offering scenes, birth house, and additions by later rulers. I’m now about blogged out, and by Philae we were about templed out. We saw a lot of temples, and pretty much could make sense of the architecture and main pictorial themes. To get any deeper and continue to learn would require some real study and more time than we had.

We also went by the High Dam, which we were excited to see, but really you just stop in the middle of the dam and look both directions. There is no tour of the machinery. There is also a very stark memorial to Soviet-Egyptian friendship by the dam, as the Soviets helped pay for a lot of it. On the way back into Aswan, we stopped by an old quarry where a half-excavated obelisk was left when the quarriers realized it had a crack. It was an interesting wander.

We also got booted from our hotel rooms in Aswan at noon although we didn’t have to leave until mid-afternoon. We got back early from our trip and got Maeve down before noon. Then everybody went to check out, while I camped out in the hall outside our room until Maeve woke up. She slept maybe an hour and a half, not too bad.

The trip back to Cairo on the plane was fine, bur our travel agent had booked us in a hotel near the Pyramids instead of a hotel by the airport, and the traffic, as usual was horrible. We were so tired and exhausted by the time we got in. We first negotiated a later pick up time the next morning to get to the airport and ordered to go boxes so we could eat on the run. We got Maeve down, ordered room service, ate, and went to bed. Yay!

The next morning, Mike took a quick picture of the pyramids on our way out of the hotel. We had no problem making our flight from Cairo to Heathrow. We got a quick bite in Heathrow, and we headed for our flight to Frankfurt, leaving Mike’s parents to make their way to Dallas. In Frankfurt, there were no problems getting through the airport and we had time to hit a bakery and the grocery store and still waited a few minutes for our train although I’d originally been worried we wouldn’t have time to make our connection. Two hours later in Saarbruecken, and a taxi ride to the Max Planck guesthouse on the Uni campus, and special for new year’s eve – sleep!

No comments: