A Feast or a Famine? (On the Eid El Adha.)

Hi folks, here we are again on the Feast of Sacrifice. When Egypt celebrates Abraham's obedience to God in offering his son as a burnt offering, only the Muslims believe that it was Hagar's son Ishmael, whereas everyone else believes that it was Sarah's son Isaac! Never mind, it's only one of the many fundamental differences between Islam and the other Abrahamic faiths. By the way, did you know that Sarah was a Luxor lass? Neither did I until a man from the West Bank told me, mind you, he was also adamant that Egypt had won the Six Day War against Israel!

Egyptians; they're a queer lot at the bottom of them!

I purposely didn't take any bloodthirsty pictures of slaughtered animals this year. As we strolled around this afternoon, we had to side-step quite a few puddles of blood mixed with water where the streets had been 'cleaned' after the butchers had done their business. (The thought of getting John the Butcher's black pudding recipe for next year, did cross my mind, but it might not go down too well here, eh Dear Reader?)

I keep reading, here and there, that there are no tourists in Luxor. But that's not actually true! There aren't many, admittedly, but there are a few; we see them every day. There certainly aren't enough to keep tourist businesses viable, and ere's a shot of the Savoy Market, just to illustrate the point:

Of the 90 or so units spread over three floors, there are only about six shops open for business. Those of you who know this bazaar will know just how busy it can be during normal working, as people use it as a short-cut to the Corniche!

I'm amazed at people here! We all know that tourism has been the life-blood of Luxor for a great many years, even those who never see a tourist rely on those who deal directly with them for the livelihood. Most of the money coming into the city has been tourist money for probably over a hundred years. And, I see people in desperate straits every day. Yet........many act as though nothing is wrong at all, as if they have no desire for well-paid employment!

Those of you who know Our Luxor, will recognise this dodgy wrought ironwork as the boundary where 'Our Luxor' starts and 'Their Luxor' ends! It's where beyond which, the 'Thousand and One Nights' experience awaits our guests, combined of course with the many much needed Western necessities!

The flat below, on the same landing as this metal gate, is now the clinic of Dr Ashraf. He's a dentist, and I've been to him for a filling. I was most impressed with all the brand-new equipment as well as his kindly manner and reasonable charges. But some of his patients are typical Egyptians!

"What does that mean?" I hear you ask. I don't want to appear racist, or anything like that, however, the typical Luxor Egyptian drops or throws his/her rubbish or litter wherever they happen to be at any given moment. Which means that some of it (fag packets used tissues etc) ends up on our side of the wrought iron! Dr Ashraf's assistant (no, he's not another Igor) is quite conscientious regarding keeping the stairs and landing clean, but obviously, he cannot clean on our side of the ironwork, so we had to come up with a 'cunning plan'.

It eventually became clear that the best solution to the problem (whilst also reducing the possibility of being disturbed by any noise from the lower floors) was to replace the triangle of ironwork with a brick wall, and having the remaining ironwork fitted with Georgian Wired Glass. Ideal!

Seeing as Coffeeshop Adam has had some brickwork done recently, I thought I'd ask him for an introduction to his builder-man.

Adam brought the man, and explained exactly what we wanted doing, and that we wanted it doing on a Sunday (when Dr Ashraf was closed, him being Coptic Christian). It was all arranged, the price was a bit on the high side, but hey-ho, we'd bite the bullet! I got cracking on Saturday, I didn't expect a brick-layer to have an angle grinder to cut through the welds on the ironwork, so just I did it and
left one cut to make on the Sunday morning before he would land at 08:00.

Eight o'clock came and went, so did nine! There was no sign of Adam, the coffeeshop was still closed, so I went to bed. (I hadn't slept at all, with this job running round and around in my head all night.) When I awoke, I went down to remonstrate with Adam, who went off immediately to the man's house. On returning, he told me that the man had had an accident, but that another man would be here shortly. He came at 3.30pm, and after looking at the job (about 3 hours max) quoted me about two weeks wages, plus I had to supply the sand and cement and bricks!!!!!

I just couldn't reconcile this with a people who are in general financial trouble, and I'm sick and tired of strangers trying to take me for a ride just because I have white skin, and am therefore deemed to be 'rich'!!!! So, he was given his marching orders, and the ironwork was humped back up the stairs, and fastened back in with some electrical wire until the welder can come tomorrow (sorry, it's now today!) and tack it back into place. I suppose that it'll get done the way we want it eventually.

People keep posting on various forums etc, that there are no Nile cruises currently
running. What's this then, that I saw today from the terrace of the Nile Palace?

We stopped off to get some eggs from the egg shop, I don't know whether I've ever shown it to you before, so here it is, just in case I haven't:

You'd be amazed at just how many eggs Egyptians can get through; it's not unusual to see someone carting away three or four trays, yes, that's 90 or 120 eggs! And, there's another shop exactly the same not 100 yards away.

As I said, "A queer lot!" (But we still love them.)

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