Men with Beards!!!!!

Howdy, I'm speaking like someone from the 'Wild West' because that's what it seems like here in Luxor at the moment, well it does to some casual observers anyway.

I'm certain that any of you lot (who care about Luxor) will have heard the latest news regarding our new Governor. Yes, that's right; he's a founder member of the (former) terrorist group which committed the Hatshepsut tourist massacre in 1997, and which was also supposedly responsible for the assassination of Egypt's former president, Anwar Sadat! Not an obvious choice, one would think. But then, who would have expected Mr McGuiness to now wield so much political power in Northern Ireland, after his shenanigans in his previous role as a high ranking IRA man? Or, come to that, many of the Israeli politicians of recent years, after their former terrorist allegiances.

Well, the politically aware of Luxor could only manage a 26% turnout in the Presidential election, or so I believe. (Similar to the turnout in my English hometown for Mr T Bliar's last government!) And this is what non-engagement gets you; government edicts (and appointments) which you really don't want!

We noticed a serious column of black smoke rising from the Corniche area, near the Luxor Supreme Council building, from our rooftop eerie. Of course we'd heard that the tourism folk were protesting against the Governor's appointment, and we actually feared that someone had set fire to the Council building! Obviously, being intrepid as we are, we just had to investigate on your behalf, Dear Reader.

Our equally brave transport provider was telephoned, and duly turned up with Edward the horse in the shafts, and little Bedawy (nicknamed 'Mido' after the footballer) perched on top next to himself. Away we went!

This is the scene which greeted us as we approached the Savoy Bazaar on the Corniche, burning tyres at both ends of the demomnstration. Not very inviting, I must admit!

Nevertheless, we reporters have to suffer for our 'art'! I dismounted, crossed the road onto the river side pavement, and got in among the business. I met a couple of tourists who were actually coming out of the melee, who seemed quite un-fazed, which surprised me somewhat after reading all the scaremongering tripe on TripAdvisor recently. Never mind, I plodded on, into the crush!

Here's a little, poor quality as usual, movie, so you can use your imagination to get an idea of what it was actually like.

Several strangers spoke to me, to reassure me that tourists were safe in this crowd. I was rather taken aback to see at least three men whom I knew to be senior managers in top tourist hotels among those gathered! I actually spoke to two of them, separately. They were both there to register their utter disappointment that such a man (with beard, although I don't think he actually has one!) with such a background, should be placed in this crucially imortant position.

It was explained to me that the purpose of the gathering was to actually stop the new man from entering his office and taking up his position. So far, they seem to have succeeded, but heaven knows what's to come. I mean, would any other elected government stand for such blatently illegal activity?

Well, I'd better be off to bed now, 'cause we're up again in less than four hours to catch our EgyptAir flight to Cairo, where we connect (Insh'Allah) with their onward flight to Manchester International!

See you soon, in Windy Nook.

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