Milestones or Millstones?

There's only one letter difference!

We've very recently passed the milestone of 100,000 views on this Blog. But I have to admit that once or twice, during the five years or so that I've been keeping it; it has seemed rather like the proverbial millstone.

I'm very pleased to say that that hasn't been my feelings for quite a long time, though. In fact, I don't feel any pressure to "create" now. If there's nothing happening which I feel like writing about, then I won't bother (unless I've got some interesting pictures to show you anyway).

With the distinct lack of tourists here in Luxor, there's most of my inspiration gone at a stroke! Never mind though, what do you think of this:

I noticed it just the other day, it's fastened to the wall near the bottom end of Gold Street. Out of the corner of my eye, I thought bit was a live owl, but when I looked properly, it wasn't (an owl or alive). But it is a fair sized bird of prey. Perhaps our friend Margaret Quinn can ask her husband, "the twitcher" to identify it for us?

Did I mention, a while ago, that the police seemed to be getting back into the swing of things? Well, as we were returning from shopping on TV Street a few nights ago, we came upon stationary traffic at the junction with Salahadeen Square. The 'bus was about full, but we couldn't move for about ten or maybe fifteen minutes.

Then a policeman came to the driver's door, accompanied by what looked like one of the young gigolos, with a bandanna tied around his head. (Must have been "plain clothes" police, I suppose.) They took the driver away, and he left the engine running. We sat for a while longer, until the driver returned; but he proceeded to turn off the engine and evict us all from the 'bus! I did notice that everyone else was offered their fares back; white faces strike again!!!!!

Never mind! We walked along Salahadeen Square and onto Mancheya Street, and hailed another 'bus, it's not as if there's a shortage of them, now is it? Well, beggar me if this 'bus wasn't stopped as well, on Salah Selim Street beside the railway crossing at the top of our street! "One minute", he said as he leapt out the door, another one leaving the engine running. I was actually readying myself to get out and walk the rest of the way, when I noticed him hurrying back to take his place.

Although they're all over the place making a big show of stopping vehicles of all shapes and sizes to check licences etc, one of our friends had his motor bike stolen today, in broad daylight on the Corniche, outside of the office where he works, and where there are usually about 6 or 7 policemen within sight and all within about 30 yards! He's devastated, obviously!

After bumping into a friend who works at the Winter Palace, and asking him if we might be able to get away without paying the 50le each to get in for a cup of tea, we went, and we did! We arrived via the back tradesmen's entrance, but found that we couldn't get through the gardens to the back of the OWP because of this:

We had to walk past the pool and the Pavilon Winter hoping that it would disperse by the time we got around to the back steps, but then came across this:

It was still choking; no wonder the mozzies don't like it! We ended up having to go around past Gaddis, and use the grand front entrance. Thankfully, this time, the security man didn't man-handle Freda out of the door and we managed to have a very pleasant hour or so in the foyer sipping at our respective drinks.

I've seen the man in the following picture a few times recently. He's a stranger to me, but he has a lovely face and a "man's" beard! It cost me 3le backsheesh to get the picture, I hope you think it was money well spent?

I'll have one like that, some day. Bet you didn't know that I too used to be a "Man With Beard", eh? I'll show you on one of these Sundays during the week!!!


  1. You are a braver man than me, growing a beard indeed, as much as I travel, I still try and get a shave as much as possible (but I havent resorted to these electric/battery things)
    I tried to grow a beard (as if we have a choice, it just grows anyway) it felt awful, but it was the best shave I ever had getting rid out it
    I really cant understand why people arent coming back to Luxor, its a fantastic place, I have never seen any trouble there
    You can just wander around to your hearts content, when we were there, everyone used to offer you tea (I dont think they could afford it now though)
    You can have street food or even a 5 star meal, either way the people will welcome you with open arms
    I always enjoy reading about the life of everyone out there, good or bad, I really like these little snippets when they get posted
    I think the police in the UK will be doing the same now, we dont have to display the tax disc now (I have a whole wad of past discs now)
    Congratulations on passing that milestone, it doesnt mean much but its nice to see people are reading your entries (i enjoy em anyway)

  2. I did mean to mention the bird of prey, maybe its there to frighten away the pigeons (I dont think it works though, but the idea is there)

    I can understand the Mozzies not liking that smoke, it does choke you as it wends its way across the garden, I wonder if it ever works, because when the smoke is there, all the tourists disappear and that means the Mozzies dont have anything to munch on

  3. This from my email:

    Hi Edward and Freda

    I was very excited to find my name in your blog. I have asked Tony for his opinion – the bird’s head is at a funny angle. My husband’s best ‘guess’ is that it could be a Steppe Buzzard – they migrate from the the Steppes of Russia, where they breed, then winter in Africa.

    I hope this is helpful.

    I am glad that you have been able to have a libation in the Winter Palace without paying the ‘fee’- it is hardly encouraging anyone to come in.

    Warm regards

    Margaret. x