Saturday, 13 January 2007

More on Cairo

Hi again. The Egyptian people are extremely friendly, but there are a lot of people out to scam tourists. We have been told all the most well known tricks, but the books also say not to be rude, as many people are genuinely friendly. Its so hard to tell - sometimes you are taken in by the scam artists, and other times you are rude to people just trying to be friendly..... This morning we took a taxi with two other Aussies to Islamic Cairo. We left it till the afternoon, as its Friday and there are extra prayers today. We went into a Mosque and climbed the Minaret. Apart from the terrible smog obscuring the city, it was a great view. A little further on, a personable young man told us the way to the most beautiful mosque - the only one that would be open today due to Friday prayers, and the only one where we could climb the minaret.... Why on earth did alarm bells not sound then? We had just been in another mosque, and climbed the minaret. Well, they did for me I guess, I did tell him we'd be fine with the map, but once we started moving in that direction, we picked him up again... After being lead for a long time through narrower and dirtier back streets, Jason and I decided to head back while we still knew the way ( a common scam is to get tourists lost, then ask for 'baksheesh' to get them out) but our companions chose to continue. I hope they found the mosque, or at worst just got charged a big tip to find the main road again, but you have to be so careful here... I'm sure they will have some sort of story to tell us at dinner. OK, I'm nearly out of time again, so Ill say bye for now.... Yes, the sound and light show at Giza really stooped this low.... see below for a moment during the show (it wasnt all that bad, but it certainly caused much hilarity on the bus home that night) and yes, that is bagpipes you can see in the bottom picture - what other instrament would you expect to open the show?? ROTFLOL

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