I’m drawn to the desert. So much that I sometimes wonder whether I was meant to live in it. In one way, the desert is the complete opposite of the snow and ice of home – the temperature and the relationship with the sun. In another way, the landscapes are the same: forceful, sometimes brutal, and magically beautiful.
It’s early January on the Nile. Early morning as well. The girls are still asleep. I’m alone on deck. Going down river (north) is windier. The pages of my note pad is blowing fiercly, at times lightly whipping my face. It’s bitterly cold.
Still Monday 7 January 2008: In the felucca, we sailed past the Old Cataract Hotel. From the Nile, this old world hotel looks grand, perched on the granite bluff above. If you’ve seen Death on the Nile, it will also look familiar. Alex, my oldest daughter, enjoys sipping tea in old world hotels, preferably while [...]
By Aswan in the River Nile is Elephantine Island. It houses temple ruins (including the ruins of a step pyramid), two nilometers (structures measuring the water level during flooding season) and a luxury Mövenpick hotel. Most interestingly, though, Elephantine has a considerable Nubian population, living in three villages on the island.
Sunday 6 January 2008 – still relatively early. It’s 0930, we’ve come back from Kom Ombo, had breakfast and the girls are resting in the cabin. I am on the sun deck, watching life and scribbling notes as we drift slowly up river. Food for the imagination, and for idle musings along the Nile. We’ll [...]
The Edfu Temple is the best preserved in Egypt, perhaps in all of antiquity. The pylon here is an impressive 56 metres high, taller than the one at Karnak.
Friday 4 January 2008: We’re up early, 5 am, so we can experience Karnak before the crowds. Situated right outside Luxor, Karnak Temple is the largest ancient religious site in the world. An impressive avenue of ram-headed sphinxes connects it with Luxor Temple. Karnak is a place of records: everything here seems to be the [...]