Random "Daily Photos" from a Personal Collection on Flickr

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Sounds Like 3 Weeks - Day 21

I pity folks who get off two or three weeks a year. That would allow us to do almost exactly nothing.

I've been very lucky to have had a very flexible work schedule over the years, but I have to admit this retirement one is the absolute best ever! Just giving a little thanks before the North American day for it tomorrow. I saw a live turkey for sale the other day at the souk, but we'll forgo all the plucking.

2015_11_25 Full Moon and Only My Phone

We went the East Bank this evening. I wanted to buy some beer and I don't think there's a shop close to us on this side. We also stopped to buy more fancy cake slices at a well-known pastry shop. You know, we got all the essentials: cake and beer!

On the return we walked by the Luxor Temple to get to the ferryboat. The full moon was bright and in a perfect location but I hadn't brought my camera. Note to self: Don't forget the camera on full moon nights. Of course, I did have my phone.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Night Moves - Day 20

It now seem appropriate to take naps from 2:00 to 3:00 PM.

The sun starts to get lower by 4:00 and our neighbhourhood seems to get a bit more active before sunset. Dogs bark, kids shout, and more people walk along the streets. Of course there's the bustle of people who've finished work going home. It seems as though many pick up things for dinner on the way to their houses.

We, too, often choose this time to go out for errands. Today, we went over to the other side at a bit before 5:00 and sunset. I love sitting on the big, national ferry boats. Three run during peak hours and leave every 15 minutes or so, give or take. We always scramble up the worn stairs to the upper deck. The trip across is only a matter of minutes but during this part of the day, the little journey across is relaxing.

We thought to walk to Ragab & Sons Supermarket. There were a few things to pick up; however, we came back with $US30 of stuff. The two bags between us weren't heavy. When we walk there and back it's about 5 or 6 kilometers. That's a perfect amount of daily exercise. We had never really checked out what was downstairs, so we wandered around a while. We got back to the villa after about two hours.

From our side, we can look back to the corniche of Luxor's East Bank. These little, private boats can also take passengers across the Nile River.

Looking East

Monday, November 23, 2015

Instagram's Killed Postcards - Day 19

So far, we've gone across the Nile to the East Bank of Luxor every day except one, although we really don't need to.

In fact, I think there are some local folks from this side of the Nile who don't cross on a regular basis. However, we have noticed many people walk from the West Side Bus Station to the ferry and that many seem to be commuters. We went over again this morning for the fun of it.

The weather is great in the morning as the temperature warms up from the overnight lows toward the afternoon high. I can see why Ra was worshiped here. First, after getting off the public ferry, we needed to walk around the Luxor Temple to get to the post office.


Egypt Post

It was just yesterday when we went in search of postcards, but they have become a rare item, indeed. Perhaps video killed the radio star, but the Internet has killed far more. A few places had fading copies but we stopped to inspect none closely.

Almost upon our return, we saw a boy with accordion sets pestering a busload of Chinese tourists as the got off the bus to take a pre-arranged motorboat across the river. We bought a set and cut them up. These picture postcards were ready for mailing today. We'll see how fast Egypt Post is. (Last year, my dad got my Christmas card from Mexico in February!)

Fruits Seller


Market Morning

We continued onward to the market which is behind the train station. We picked up a few vegetables and won't need to go out to the rural market as we did last Tuesday.

Life unfolds at a slow and peaceful pace. I try to read a few chapters in the late afternoon sun of the garden.

Afternoon Read in the Sun

Sunday, November 22, 2015

The Importance of Making New Habits - Day 18

I was feeling especially smug and self-satisfied earlier today. I tried to analyze why I am feeling so. I think it boils down to being all set up for our winter in a mere week. We now know where to buy things we need. We are pleased with our accommodation. Most importantly, we have gained a fairly quick knowledge of our previously unknown surroundings.

Travelling is important because it breaks one's habits. It becomes necessary to adapt and broaden one's views. One is kicked down to the bottom of Maslow's hierarchy. Food and shelter take initial priority. That offers a fast education and, when experienced, a great sense of accomplishment.

I would hate how things could settle into a comfortable routine and years just slip by unnoticed. Honestly, I believe it's really healthy to shake it up a bit.

Experience has shown me that not everyone has the same needs. Seeing the world from other horizons, though, has always been important to Jay and me. Personally, I want to keep trying to live a life worth remembering.

Based Street

After several visits to Ragab & Sons Supermarket, we discovered a whole floor we'd not seen. Now, that will be our premier place when shopping for our bigger items. It's across the road from the end of Medina Street, pictured above. See, live and learn!

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Textures from the Nile's West Bank - Day 17

I suppose weekends are made for doing little. This is true even when the weekends are comprised of Fridays and Saturdays. It's been a long time since we lived a Sunday-through-Thursday work week. That was a routine during all 15 years of living and working in the Gulf. Well, here I guess there really is not going to be any work involved.

Today makes one week since our arrival in Luxor and it's the first day we didn't cross to the other side of the Nile. We walked around a bit more of our area. So for today's entry I will post just three images, which interestingly all involve food. They represent:

1) A huge plot of bananas,
2) Purchases from La Voche P√Ętisseria, and
3) Fresh, dark-coloured dates.

Tastes Even Better

Fresh Dates

Friday, November 20, 2015

A Chance to Chill - Day 16

Today was our first Friday in Luxor. We allowed it to be our first day of lessened activity. On Fridays, the mosques have special Friday prayers as it is the Moslem holy day. It seems as though our Internet connection is on a bit of a holiday too. It's been dodgy since yesterday afternoon.

We stayed at home in the morning and practiced relaxing a little. I downloaded an e-book from BC Libraries. Novels haven't generally been a recent habit but I have more free time and fewer distractions here.

Crossing Again

We thought Friday evenings might be busy. So, we made our trip over to the East Bank at about 4:30 PM. As Egypt no longer switches to and from Daylight Savings Time anymore, the clocks remain constant throughout the year. Sunrise is early but so is sunset with about 10 hours and 45 minutes long of daylight at present.

Luxor After Dark

We had heard about a fruit/vegetable and fish market on the other side of Luxor's train station. In order to cross, everyone must walk though the station tunnel. We found it but only a few sellers were around at the time. We crossed back under the station to return to street well-known to us. We did pick up a few more things at our spice seller. Oh, and we found Twinky Patisserie. I know two people who'll be eating a more-than-sufficient amount of sweets and cakes this winter!

Cake from Twinky's

Thursday, November 19, 2015

In Search of a Microwave - Day 15

We don't have to fret about the weather. We know a cool night of around 15C (59F) will heat up to about 28C (82F) by the early afternoon. The chance of rain remains nil by the Nile, not only for the upcoming week but for the next five months! We followed reports of an early winter storm recently battering Vancouver with a mixture of interest and amusement from afar.


Today's mission was getting a microwave oven. We weren't satisfied with either store close to us and decided to buy one from the Regab and Sons Supermarket in downtown Luxor. We crossed on the ferryboat at quarter to nine.

This particular market is open 24 hours per day. We walked down a very interesting market street opposite Regab's before going inside. We saw the famous old supermarket called Omar's yet arrived well before it opened. Still, that leaves something for another day. The street had predominately vegetable sellers early in the morning and might be fun to explore some evening.


The store staff at Regab's were very helpful. The manger even encouraged testing the unit right in the store. Some staff took a drinking glass from the housewares section and filled it with water. The oven seemed to work, so we were encouraged we'd not have to lug it back should it be defective. The manager even stood by the street and hailed a taxi so we could get back to the ferryboat easily. The box really wasn't very heavy.

Transport Unboxing

From our side we got back to the villa by tuk tuk. We have only seen four of five of them in Egypt. I didn't ask what they are called locally and I am relying on the name often used in Sri Lanka or SE Asia.

Tuk Tuk Here?

We are now set up with a familiar way to heat all the food Jay has already cooked. It is nice to see a full refrigerator now.

In the evening we walked around some of the neighbourhood and went to the center on this side for some vegetables. The sun sets at about 5:15 PM but by 6:00 PM it is as dark as midnight.