Here we go Looby Loo!

The title of this Blog will only mean anything to English people who remember "Watch with Mother", on the telly during their childhood; Looby Loo was the female friend of Andy Pandy, a marionette who wore striped, onesie, pyjamas and a matching night cap. There was the song, too; "Here we go Looby Loo, here we go Looby Light, here we go Looby Loo, all on a Saturday night!"

I'm certain that many of you will know, immediately, what I'm on about here today: The suicide bomber at Karnak! Yet another opportunity for the world's press to hammer Luxor as far as tourism goes.

We've been replying to emails from friends and former guests who've been asking if we are OK. Well, to answer any more well-wishers; yes, we are fine, and thanks for caring. We're actually on our holidays here in Windy Nook, where we have a much greater chance of being murdered, if the local newspapers and TV news is anything to go by!!! Only last month a poor Egyptian man was found in the street (about a half mile away) with "catastrophic head injuries". He was dead, of course, and I haven't heard or seen anything to suggest that the culprits have been caught.

We aren't troubled too much about this one-off occurrence in Luxor. After all; it could happen to anyone at anytime and anywhere! If we cower in the corner in the face of these atrocities, then the terrorists have won; we'll all end up not being able to cross our own threshhold!

Instead, let's ignore the spoilers? We've just taken delivery of a plaque to go on the stair wall between the Our Luxor guest apartment and our own roof-top hovel. It just about sums up our feelings, I think:

So there it is, our invitation to you. "Come and have some tea in the Land of the Pharaohs."

See you soon, Insh'Allah.

What was that? Say again?

I'm going ever so slightly deaf! It's been coming on for a long time, but it is becoming quite a problem. So I determined (long before we came home for the summer) to ask the doctor to refer me to the ENT Department of our local NHS hospital.

To digress, just for a minute; you know, don't you Dear Reader, that I've always had a fancy for old things. (Even my wife is coming into her own, now that she's a pensioner!) Old cars, old songs, old houses, old fashioned clothes, in fact; old ......whatever! Well, it struck me some time ago that an old fashioned ear trumpet might suit me down to the ground. After all, my hearing isn't really that bad, it's more that I have problems distinguishing speech amongst other (background) noise, mainly. And a directional trumpet might actually be as much use as one of these modern electronic mini-gadgets, which just seem to amplify ALL the noise.

Anyway, both of us had appointments with our GP (General Practitioner/family doctor; for the foreigners among you) this morning, and I had a shipping order (Colloquialism; shipping order = a long list) for Dr Groom to deal with, and my appointment was for 08:20, with Freda following directly on at 08:40. So, it was early to bed so as to allow plenty of time for showering, breakfasting and walking to the surgery (clinic).

For some unknown and ridiculous reason, I was awake at 02:30!!!! Tossing and turning, but not getting back to sleep, I finally got up at 04:00, just as one of our neighbours was starting his car as he rushed off to work. What to do at 4 o'clock in the morning? Ahhh! I could look for an ear trumpet on eBay, or anywhere, come to that. After all, I fully expect that when the good doctor does refer me to the hearing clinic, it will entail a wait of months on end; and a trumpet could be a good stop-gap until I was sorted out.

And so I did. eBay brought up several examples, most of which were modern, jokey type of things; with one or two being real antiques, and priced accordingly. Another one looked absolutely ideal! Here it is:

Is that a beauty, or what????

The auction isn't finished for a day or two yet, and the price has started to rise already, so I don't expect to get it. Never mind, it's probably a passing phase, anyway. However..................

After more or less dismissing this particularly enchanting hearing device as unobtainable, I clicked onto the next result on the Google list, and it was the MailOnline! (Before you ask; yes, I am a right-wing reactionary Daily Mail reader!) and all of a sudden, the following headline leapt off the page and smacked me right in the eye!

"Never mind surround sound - get an ear trumpet:"

How is that possible? And..... it was written by my favourite columnist, good old Richard Littlejohn. (Again, for the foreigners among you; he is a man who is almost universally hated for his perceived right-wing, flog-'em and hang-'em, views and style of writing.)

In the words of dear Mr Littlejohn....."You couldn't make it up!"


Waking up in Aswan.

On the next morning, we awoke to have a daylight look at the Tombs of the Nobles, nice enough, I suppose, but a bit of a come-down from last night's impression!

We returned to the cabin after breakfast to an unexpected visitor!!! These towel sculptures are really very good, and as I said earlier, they're all (so far) new to me.

Up on the sundeck I had a bit of a wave about with the camera, it's strange what you can find:

Here's a shot of a new hotel which is taking shape right next to where the Royal Viking was moored. And here, below, is one of the shuttering joiners about 8 floors up. I was frightened just watching him!

A little further South, I noticed someone working on another tall building:

I nearly died when I saw a man jump from the right-hand corner of the building!! I stood, in both horror and disbelief, for a few moments, but then he appeared at the base of the wall from which he'd jumped. Phew! What a relief.

We took a stroll along to the Ferial Gardens, a lovely spot near to the famous Old Cataract Hotel. We've sat on the seats there on several occasions before, just gazing over the choppy First Cataract of the Nile, and Kitceher's Island, to the Aga Khan's Mausoleum and towards the Western desert where lies the fascinating Monastery of St Simeon. Not today, though! They've put on an entrance fee, and the robbing beggar wanted 10le, each! While we were down there, I took this rather uninspiring shot of the river, That's the "conning tower", on the left, which used to be the Aswan Oberoi Hotel, I'm not sure which name it goes by, now. 


We walked slowly back through the souks; a very different experience from those in our Luxor.

By the time we got back to the boat, I was worn out. Lunch and sleep took up the afternoon. We didn't re-appear till dinner!

After yet another lovely meal, there was the "Egyptian Show", in the lounge/bar, which entailed the usual whirling dervish and a (single) stick-dancing man, who encouraged one or two of the audience to join in. The boat manager had remembered (two days late) that it was Freda's birthday, and a very acceptable cake was produced. By the time we cut it and shared it around, we only got one piece each, but I think our sharing was appreciated.

On our return to the cabin, we were really surprised to see yet more, equally novel, towel sculptures! They included a nice birthday cake with a great big candle, and toilet-roll streamers spread about the place.

Further cups of tea in our cabin, and a turn around the dack before turning in. The moon just appeared inbetween the wings of the new hotel, as if to wish us, "Goodnight!"