Sunday, January 9, 2011


I slept in so late after arriving in Alex that I didn't have time to see much of the city, so I walked over to the Montazah Palace and gardens as that seemed the only feasible sightseeing opportunity remaining in the day. It was hard to walk 10 feet without getting some sort of attention. Cars would roll up slowly behind me and follow for a bit. Sometimes they would just move on. Sometimes they would say something in arabic. And then there was one car, with the bass pumping and a familiar sound...western music...what was it? Nellie! I pictured a black dude with a bandaid on his face driving an old cutlass but, when I looked back, I saw this:
Rami and Mohamed (as I eventually learned after they followed me on foot for a while) were just curious what I was doing in Alex, if I was alone, and if I wanted a tour of the city. I politely lied and declined the tour invitation and we went our separate ways. 

On a recommendation, I grabbed seafood for dinner near the sea wall. One of the servers sat at a chair next to me. Not to keep me company, but to keep the tenacious (but extremely cute) kittens from pestering me for scraps. I didn't mind the kittens so much, but the kitten-shoer guy could have been handy during my walk around the Palace gardens.

A band was performing at the restaurant and began singing Boney M's Brown Girl in the Ring and I couldn't help but think that this was not as I pictured Egypt would be. Today made up for that. I hired a car to take me sightseeing for the day; a two day itinerary in one day.

My 'english speaking' driver made my spanish skills look advanced. Most of the tourist sites in Alex do not work well for 'self-guided' tours as there is no english language explanation to guide one along. And, free of the distraction of a verbal explanation of what I was looking at, this left me with plenty of time to walk around and not take pictures (no cameras in most places - even some outdoor exhibits!).

A productive day. I feel that I've seen Alexandria now!


Blogger Emma said...

Are people prone to following/eyeing you because you're

a) white?
b) female? (alone)
c) both?
d) neither?

Also, I want a reverse kitten bouncer. Someone to attract all the kittens to me, please.

January 19, 2011 at 5:26:00 AM MST  

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