Well here we are again. According to Ruby Tuesday, the FCO were waiting until after Friday prayers when they would seriously review their stance on travelling to Luxor. Why after Friday prayers? Because this (they decided) was when there would be a flare-up of trouble, if there was any at all.
With this in mind, and being fairly sure that there would be no trouble here in Luxor, the Boss and I ventured forth, camera in hand. At first, I couldn't believe how quiet it actually was. We wondered if all the potential protesters hadn't just gone to bed after praying. As we walked down Yousef Hassan Street and turned left onto Karnak Street, it was as quiet as the grave!
As we ambled along towards the plaza behind the Temple, I was surprised to see several vehicles driving towards us, "What's this?" I thought, "Is the Corniche closed, or Rameses Street?" When I noticed that some of them were the local buses, I realised that it must be Rameses Street, because it is one way and these buses would normally be travelling along that way. Being as thick as two proverbial short ones, it was a few moments before it clicked that there might be a gang of protesters blocking the road somewhere. Sure enough, as we got as far as the Abu Haggag Mosque, we could hear the commotion of a parade coming down Station Street (Sharia Mahatta). We hurried on to get a decent view of the protesters as they came down towards the Temple, and got a space near the Post office. The marchers (what; Egyptians have learned how to march?) were about half way down the street, giving me enough time to sort out the camera (what; me sort out the camera?) Anyway, I got some video of the parade, which I think just about shows the mood of the participants.
What do you think, do they look menacing and dangerous?
That's correct, the answer is NO. Luxor people aren't like that. That is what I've been trying to tell you all along! No-one gave us a second look, never mind a second thought.
As we made our way along to the corner of Mohammed Farid Street, to catch a bus up to Tutti Fruitti for our now regular "English Afternoon Club", we saw four tourists. I snapped them, just in case you didn't believe me. Actually there were two in Aboudi's Bookshop as well, and we saw another one (male) coming around the corner of Mohammed Farid Street. Now tourists nod at you, a bit like Reliant Robin owners, who used to flash their lights at each other on the road!!!!! We do feel a bit "exclusive" dontcha know?
Actually, we saw a few more tourists as well! Four strolled past Tutti Fruitti while we were in there. Then, later on when we went out looking for any celebrations to mark President Mubarak's resignation, we saw several more.
We had aborted the search for celebrations, after only coming across a couple of wedding parties, and retired to the Etap, to see if they were still open. They were, and a gentleman was sitting having a shisha and a drink, so we planted ourselves at a table and ordered tea, Nescafe and an apple shisha for me. While we were there we saw another two ladies return to the hotel and, as we were leaving, we saw another lady with a baby in a pram! Mr Gaber told us they had four guests, so we had seen them all.
Come on Foreign Office, get your finger out!