I have fallen in love with upper Egypt.
Upper Egypt is so named because it is at higher elevation than lower Egypt ( where the river meets the sea ).
Despite all the people it is easy to shut it all out and feel peaceful and serene.
There is a grandeur to this place
It is like a queen.
At the suggestion of another guest at the hotel Philae I went to the Old cataract hotel to watch the sunset over Aswan. A truly gorgeous experience which I hope to repeat this evening. The hotel is positioned in a brilliant location for sunset watching
I joined the tour and was overjoyed to see many old friends from other White Wolf Journeys adventures, it turns out I know most of the group and that is just lovely. It contributes to the peaceful feeling.
Our very first excursion was to the Temple of Isis at Philae. For anyone who is confused Isis was the name given to a legendary queen of ancient times who was seen as an earthly manifestation of the supreme mother principle, or birthing principle. Ancient Egypt referred to her as the Goddess Isis. Nothing to do with the same letters spelt in capitals which is a modern phenomenon in current affairs.
We had special permission to attend her famous temple in the early morning before it opened to other tourists. To get there on time we left in that darkest hour before dawn when the stars are at their brightest.
The experience of walking through that temple beneath starlight will remain with me forever. I have felt even more peaceful ever since.
Here is the dawn rising over the Nile waters at Philae
And here are some photos of this very ancient temple including heiroglyphics depicting Isis
As promised here is a photo of Hazem explaining the temple to us
and another. I think my dad would have gotten on well with Hazem, they have very similar senses of humour
Later we went for a boat ride on the Nile with a Nubian dancer and drummer who made us all sing and dance along and that was very fun, we made a lot of noise out there but still it felt peaceful. That river flows so serenely. Another stop was a temple to the ancient creator god Khnum who in legend had a Ram’s head and fashioned creation out of the Nile river mud with his potter’s wheel. A very cool site on an island in the Nile (elephantine island) not only for the atmosphere of ancient ruins but also because we saw archeologists at work in a fenced off area at the site
As well as my imaginary boyfriend I now have an imaginary husband whom I invented to escape from a persistent guard at the KHnum temple. As soon as he found out about my ‘ husband ‘ he immediately began trying his advances on another girl from our tour. She and I discussed it later and we have decided not to tell Hazem because he will get very stressed and probably try to have the guard fired or something which will create just another thing for Hazem to worry about. Hazem is doing everything he can to ensure our comfort and safety and is turning himself upside down and inside out in the process. He is very genuine but manages to be funny at the same time. We have all become fond of him.
Tomorrow we travel to Abu Simbel.
I will take my imaginary husband with me.
Here are some photos of artwork of beautiful Nubian ladies and me trying to do another selfie.
See you at Abu Simbel!