Well, it has been a busy week, with one thing and another. Today was the final day of the Moulid and also the meeting of the Luxor Lunatic's Association (aka the ex-pats) with the new Governor of the 'Luxor Governorate'.
It was obvious that I couldn't be in two places at the same time, so I delegated the photography and filming of the Moulid to my deputy, and trotted of to the 'Office of the Supreme Council of Luxor' to see what the story there was all about.
It was relatively interesting, but as time got on one or two people wanted to get their points across by shouting across the room at the Governor. One uncouth (I'm ashamed to say, British) man was actually swearing at the Governor! I caught quite a bit of the proceedings, but (as you know) my hearing isn't what it should be, and when there were people talking over each other; I couldn't make hide nor hair of what was actually being said. Bit of a bummer really, maybe I should have delegated this instead of the Moulid?
By a happy coincidence, there was another Luxor Blogger in the room also, and she went straight home and blogged the whole of the proceedings. She heard, and reported upon, a few bits and bobs which went straight over my head! So I should probably (in this instance, anyway) direct you to her account of the afternoon's discussions. The other Blogger was, of course, the ubiquitous Mrs Akshar, and her Blog address is:
I'm sure that she's changed the whole look of her Blog page recently! Surely she couldn't have had a similar problem to mine, where I really made a muck up of the design which I originally had? Anyway, I would say that her recollection of what went on at the meeting is pretty good, and certainly better than mine. (But she's a professional, isn't she?)
Now to my deputy's work with the Moulid!
Needless to say, the Moulid procession is utterly crazy, unutterably loud and raucous, and very dangerous for participants and onlookers alike! You've really got to be careful in the streets as the 'Carnaval' comes your way.
Freda and I came out of the house at the same time, she on her way to "Snake Time" to meet a couple of friends and watch and photograph the Moulid from one of the upper floors, and me, to make my way to the Council and the 'Meeting'. It was absolute Bedlam in Mustafa Kamel Street! Our little alley was crammed at the entrance, with women and girls, mainly using their mobile phones to take as many pictures as possible. I clicked off a couple of pics before we squeezed our way into the street and plodged through the puddles of water from the 'Drinks Station' outside the coffee shop just to our left. I was too afeared to ask Freda about the state of her clean white linen pants, lol. So, one of the first pictures shows a large flame, which some headcase youth is producing with the aid of a cigarette lighter and an aerosol can! (Now I'm no jobsworth Elf 'n' Safety man, but that's got to be dangerous!!!)
Freda was going to kill a man who tried to save her life! We were only two or three yards from the entrance to our alley, and squeezing alongside the footpath with a horse and cart slowly but surely edging its way past about a foot from the kerb. This man was really panicky, you could see it in his eyes, that Freda was going to have, at least, her feet run over by the cart wheels! He wasn't very big, but was straining valiantly to bodily pick her out of the gutter and on to the footpath, where there was no room for her anyway. I was enthralled! But I could see her expression, and the poor man couldn't. Luckily, I managed to grab her hand and gently lead her off into the crowd before she had a chance to remonstrate with him.
I had a little English money to change at the Etap before I went into the Council Offices, and I knew that Freda had a 20le note, with which to get a drink or whatever at Snake Time. So you can imaging my dismay when the apparition of the widowed Aunt of a friend suddenly appeared in front of us? She is always 'on the lug' for money, and we always give her a little, but I didn't think we had any apart from the 20le and my English. Freda had a fiver tucked away somewhere (?) which she willingly handed over. But that's where the problem begins! Like so many Egyptians (and not only the poor ones) once you give them some money, they think they have a right to everything you have! Every time we see her, it ends in a row. Never mind, Freda handled the situation very well without actually resorting to violence, well, just about! ( I think she might have given the old bag a 'dead leg' or something similar!)
Anyway, enough of all that, here are a selection of my understudy's pictures and videos of the final parade of the 2011 Moulid of Abu Al Haggag, mostly taken from the first floor of the famous 'Snake Time' restaurant opposite Luxor Temple and the Abu Al Haggag Mosque.