Desert Canal

Trip Start Aug 01, 2008
1
135
150
Trip End Dec 20, 2008


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Where I stayed
MV Aenne Rickmers

Flag of Egypt  , Red Sea and Sinai,
Saturday, December 6, 2008

Saturday 6 December

Suez Canal                          N 30 31.5'          E 32 19.9'

Picked up the anchor at dawn and were in the canal almost immediately. The west bank has houses and agriculture; the east bank is mostly desert.

There are military camps and outposts all along the canal. On each side there is a watchtower every kilometre or so and sentry boxes that look rather like small bus stops every few hundred metres, often with a man inside and a small tent pitched behind. The many quays and buildings have uniformed men at them; even small boats are guarded. (Consequently, it's not clear that photography is allowed. The Captain said he'd ask the pilots, but I don't know the outcome yet.) In addition to the pilots, we have four Polish technicians aboard who are repairing something (the air-conditioning, I hope).

By 09:30, we were in the Great Bitter Lake, where a southbound convoy was at anchor, waiting for us to pass. We went very slowly for a while, and then continued along the "regular" canal for the rest of the day. In the evening, it transpired that we were heading straight for Damietta - I had expected us to anchor until tomorrow.

I was able to get Egyptian TV, and very pleased to watch almost the whole of Bolton v Chelsea, live, even though we were outclassed. The first match I've seen with this team. This was followed by a showing of The Two Towers - another three-night performance of The Lord of the Rings is in progress. 
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