Cats and Dogs

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Flag of Egypt  ,
Sunday, April 3, 2011

So yesterday we flew from Luxor to Cairo, nothing really exciting happened.  Jacki washed some of our clothes in the sink today since we were running pretty low on essentials.  Check out the picture of the water afterwards.  It was a little dirty. Today we went to the Egyptian Museum in the morning.  There is so much ancient Egyptian stuff there.  It is an older museum and kind of unorganized. Most of the artifacts didn't have any signs or explanations, and of the ones that did, some were handwritten or done by a typewriter what looked like 30 years ago, but at least they were in English. Well, some of them. They are building a new museum in Giza by the pyramids, so everything is going to be moved there in the next couple of years. There were a lot of people there measuring and archiving all the stuff.  The bottom floor was crammed full of statues, walls, columns, and coffins from archeological sites all over Egypt, many from sites we had been to over the past week.  It seemed almost endless, the amount of stuff they had on display.  We were glad that we saved this place for last, since we had a pretty good idea what we were looking at by this point.  They definitely took all of the nice artifacts from the tombs and moved it to the museum.  Everything there was in great condition.  It was pretty amazing to see so many 5,000 year old Ancient Egyptian stuff all in one place.The second floor had a lot of the smaller items like jewelery and pottery.  It also had all of the items found in King Tut's tomb, which was really cool.  They had pictures of what it looked like in the tomb when they found it next to the display.  There were a lot of items from his tomb.  Huge 10-20 foot gold boxes, carriages, weapons, statues, beds, jars, and everything carved and covered in gold.  It was pretty awesome.  We spent a few hours in the museum and then grabbed a late lunch at the museum's cafe.  The saddest looking one eyed beat up orange cat hung out with us begging for food (Ancient Egyptians considered cats sacred, and there are still tons of them all over the country everywhere).  Then the craziest thing happened. It started to rain...in Egypt...in the desert.  I looked out for frogs and locusts, but it just continued to rain for the rest of the day.  In Egypt...in the summer.  Apparently we cause inclement weather, especially when we're about to leave a country...Europe watch out. The Egyptian Museum is right next to Tahrir Square where the Egyptian Revolution took place on January 25th.  It's not really a big open square like I expected, its more of a really big busy round about with a small grass area in the middle.  They were planting flowers there today. There was a small group of people there waving flags and a couple little kids said hello and welcome to us as we walked by.  There were a couple of stands set up selling Egyptian flags and hats. Overall, you couldn't even tell that anything happened there unless you knew about it.  Everyone still shows a lot of pride for kicking the president out and there are 25th of January stickers on most of the cars driving around.  It's pretty amazing actually, how often does a peaceful demonstration lead to an overthrow of an opressive government?  It's great. Jacki's thought's on our visit to the square, "This is where Anderson Cooper was punched in the face."  We were planning to go the Chili's for dinner.  We really like the Egyptian food here,  but it's suprisingly hard to find restaurants that serve it around where we are.  It's easier to find lasagna and burgers, but so far we've been pretty consistant with seeking out and finding local fare. But anyway, there is a Chili's right down the road from our hotel on a permanently docked steam boat on the Nile.  We decided to go to a Lebanese place on the boat instead, and I got a stuffed pigeon.  Tasted just like chicken. That's about it really for today.  It rained pretty much for the whole afternoon and evening. Crazy. It was our last full day in Egypt.  It definetly has been a roller coaster ride here, and we are feeling a bit road weary.  It couldn't be more different than anything we are used to, such as being woken up at 4am by the morning call to prayer, camels riding in the back of trucks, or arabian music videos playing everywhere from restaurants to taxis.  But sometimes you have to go out of your comfort zone a little bit, because we found some absolutely amazing things here and learned a lot.  Plus, anytime we get a little homesick we just turn on some country music, watch an episode of Friday Night Lights, or check espn.com.  Seems to do the trick. It's definitely been a different travel experience than what we are used to. There is more of a language and cultural barrier then we have had so far, and it's not as condusive to wandering around and exploring on our own as we normally like to do. But it sure has been an adventure!  
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