Friday, January 9, 2009

Temple of Queen Hatshepshut and...

DAY 4 (contd)
After the balloon ride, we headed for the Necropolis of Thebes. Here you can see the 63 feet high Colossi of Memnon. That is what remained of the temple. Get a glimpse of what it is from the picture I took on the balloon ride. I forgot to take a close up picture of the colossi.
Next it was a visit to the temple of Queen Hatshepshut. The temple of Deir AlBahri as it is known in Arabic today. Queen Hatshepshut is the daughter of King Thutmose I and his queen Ahmose. Queen Hatshepshut, she married her half brother
Thutmose II. This site is very informative if you'd like to know more.

Columns with statues taking the Osirid (mummy) form.

Pictorial documentation on the walls. They depict Queen Hatshepshut's trading journeys. See the paint used, it still look good.

An Egyptian worker at the temple wearing their traditional wear, the Galabea. This man followed us for a while explaining the carvings/drawings on the wall.

Our next stop was the Valley of the Kings. This place contains the tombs of pharoahs from the New Kingdom; King Tutankhamun and Ramesses the Great are also found here. No pictures are allowed to be taken inside the tombs. There are many tombs in this valley. 62 is the number. This website has interesting write up and also pictures.
Believe me, you have guards checking your cameras for shots taken. I had my camera checked. Was I in shock when the guard pointed to one picture I had taken earlier at Queen Hatshepshut and I couldn't tell where it was taken. Shiver, shiver. You will be fined if caught. I don't know if they confiscate your camera.

The best I have. Maps of the different wings of the Valley. Nothing eerie or scary about the visits to the tombs. I was really intrigued by the drawings on the walls, the depth of the tombs, everything!

You use the same way in and out of the Valley. It was back to the cruise boat after the visits. Look at what I saw on the coach ride back. Donkey and horse carts. It is a very widely used here in the villages.

Having stayed in a number of hotels, what I saw today on our bed was amazing. See in the picture? I only have this to say, Egyptians are very creative people. The housekeeping staff used the towels in our bedroom to make a flower. The number used, it is the number assigned for the room. I find it really interesting and boy...don't I love it. I was so amused, I can't help laughing.
There is a tea-party going on in the upper deck of the ship. I didn't attend. I was more interested in these two. They are siblings, that's what they tell me. The Egyptians we met so far, they do have a smattering command of English including these two. They were asking for basis ( pronounced in Arabic and it means money). money I told them. was fun talking to the two. I asked if they go to school. No, no money was the reply brother gave me. Then a gush of wind blew and the girl rubbed her eyes. No what happened next? Brother said, "see she crying. no father, no money." Ahaahaa... Hubby gave them some doorlah and how they smiled makes you feel happy. I ended up throwing them some of our clothings and some food. The boy asked for a pen. I showed him a ball point and he waved gleefully. How simple can a need be.
After posing for me, they happily went off. They had to because the staff on our boat were yelling at them to go away.
Here in the picture, girl is picking up discarded bottles for recycling. This actually is a common sight here on the river Nile.
See I told you, Egyptians are a creative lot. Here table napkins are used. Can you make out what it is? Placed on the table at the entrance to the restaurant where we have our 3 meals. Breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Our boat set sail again. Following are pictures taken as the boat sailed.
We went under this bridge and notice the drawings on them?
Inside the restaurant looking out. River Nile it is.
Egyptians' staple is bread unlike rice in Malaysia. Here in the picture you can see Egyptian bread (eesh baladi as they call it), the bigger one is the eesh. The other two, they are Syrian bread.
We reached a part of River Nile which is too shallow for our boat to continue sailing. Here you can see the Esna lock. I know it is a bit dark and the picture isn't well taken. Out of the many shots I took, this was the best. Once the water fills up, the boat is then able to sail through this section of the river.It was a slow process and since it is quite chilly up on the upper deck, I decided to watch it from the restaurant. :o)

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