Saqra goes to

Cairo & Giza, EGYPT

'04 & '06

Photo to left taken by Saqra on the road into Giza 6/06


 I was once again planning to wait to put this page up until I got all my resources together and had time to write a proper travelogue, but that takes TIME!

I have over 800 photos from '04 and 400 photos from '06, plus hours and hours of belly dancing and folk dancing on video from '06 PLUS tons of sightseeing footage, but the fastest material for me to put up is some conventional photos and maybe one avi clip of the dervish from experimenting with my new camera, so I'm going to start there!  

These are by no means representative of all the vid/photo images I brought back, but I hope you enjoy this start... more later when I get some more video transferred...

EGYPT '04 012.jpg

Egypt Air logo. 025.jpg

View on the way into the city from the airport. 009.jpg

Downtown Cairo 036.jpg

Mosque: Downtown Cairo 356.jpg

City view. Most city views are going to show many, many satellite dishes (even in the city of the dead). 061.jpg

City view. Typical apartments 050.jpg

When we were there they were concerned about possible riots happening. These are riot response vehicles. 054.jpg

Papyrus and Lotus decorate the fountain in front of the Egyptian Museum. Both together acknowledge the two past kingdoms of Egypt. 045.jpg

Shira all dressed out and ready to sightsee. Covered hair was practical on many levels. 084.jpg

And if she got tired of what she brought we could always go shipping... 101.jpg

Pyramid shots from Giza. 105.jpg

They really weren't all that happy with us trying to take shots like this, but... 110.jpg 113.jpg 117.jpg

A little hot out there, but the merchants and locals are ready to sell you things or just be a photo op! 140.jpg

The Sphinx was MUCH smaller than I expected, but so is the reflecting pond at the Jefferson mansion. Had to work hard to find this famous camera angle, though. 532.jpg

Close to the same angle taken during the "Sound & Light" show. Eaten alive by mosquitos while speakers sonorously intone: "I....AM....THE...SPHINX!!"

and tell the history of the pyramids. 141.jpg

Turn around at the sphinx and enjoy a view of the Kentuky Fried Chicken. 170.jpg

Evening dinner cruise on the Nile. 177.jpg

Cruise features music & dancing and really good food. 182.jpg

This is a bad photo of this woman, but it does show her second costume.

Wiah I could find my pictures from going to Madame Abla's... 097.jpg

The National Dervish show... held this year in the Citidel, an ancient fortification. 221.jpg

Dervish 227.jpg

Dervish 304.jpg

The gorgeous cafe at the Mena House hotel. Pyramid views in much of this turn of the century former palace. 435.jpg

Four star hotel in Egypt means your can of Raid comes in an attractive wicker basket in the bathroom. 436.jpg

My roommate Della on the grounds of Mena House. 381.jpg

Lucy's La Parisiana nightclub. Show starts at midnight with a flock of Russian beginning belly dancers in really hideous costumes. The ones pictured are not the worst by any means, but all of our cameras were dying and we were conserving photos. 359.jpg

Singer at La Parisiana 387.jpg

Russian dancers. 399.jpg

Lime green nightmare costumes. Don't ask about the ones featuring dingle balls, or the leather hot pants number. 418.jpg

Lucy. Her part of the show started at 3am... 420.jpg


She did an Oriental, a Khaleegy, sang, did a duet with a guy that looked like wife-beating with sticks was involved. All in all the show ended about 5am, so she definitely earned her money. 442.jpg

This has nothing to do with Lucy.... this is Raqia Hassan at the Ahlan Wa Sahlan event.

And I checked this in '06 once and for all. You pronounce it "Rah-KEE-yah" according to her son. Not "RHY-ya" as many people have been insisting lately. 502.jpg

Taxi meters are strictly decorative. Negotiate the price first before getting in and your final negotiated price includes any tip.

Warning: traffic lights are considered simply advisory and are ignored by taxi drivers. Also headlights are not used at night except momentarily to say hello. 471.jpg

Khan el Khalili. This marketplace is home to a huge four floor costume shop. A friend put up a massive site of the '06 remodel... I'll dig up the address of that so you can see.

Right front guy is our armed security escort. 476.jpg

Khan el Khalili. Outdoor market.  Incidently, in Turkey they still yelled at us to get our attention, but they were constantly yelling "Excuse me!" instead of "Hello! Yankee Doodle!" as they were doing in Egypt. 607.jpg

The Citidel 520.jpg

And we just settle for pinstriping and vanity plates?

Hmmm... I can't find any photos from performing at Ahlan Wa Sahlan Festival in '04 or in '06...

I'll look harder....


First view flying into Egypt.

Welcome to Cairo International Airport

Got some gorgeous photos as we headed for Giza at sunset. These are unmodified, uncropped, no color enhancing... straight off the cameras.

Apartments downtown Cairo. Often you see buildings with rebar sticking up out of the top like they have been damaged somehow. Actually they are just permanently unfinished. As sons get married another floor is built on a building to accomidate the new family.


Roman aquaduct, downtown Cairo.

Shira's blonde hair comes out to play for once on our ride to Sakkara. She kept it covered most of the time because blondes are assumed to be Russian prostitutes. With the hair covering people assumed our blondes were Bosnian.

A grove of palms was a nice change on our way to Sakkara. The land was primarily desolate desert.

This is as good as the signs got.

Pyramid view through the trees.

Step pyramid at Sakkara.

Heap 'o Pyramid, not so well preserved, eh?

Walking the Sakkura site. Saw some amazing originally colored scenes in stone.

Some better known wall decoration. Color completely gone. The guides use this as an example of "proof of ancient belly dancing" and I see no reason to interpret them that way. Maybe ancient ballet with those arms up like that? People were eating up being told that, though. Welcome to fantasy land.

Quality signage!

The Bent pyramid.

Opposite of this is an incredible view of a huge field of pyramids stretching off into the distance... and a military installation. They were watching us to see if we were trying to photograph that.

Memphis Sphinx.

Memphis... soldiers were messing with us and trying to get the gullible American women to stand in a certain spot where they could supposedly view the statue's "pee-pee." Idiots.

Ahlan Wa Sahlan opening gala.

Projection screen at closing gala. I was desperately trying to get a shot of the ugliest, least flattering and maybe downright offensive costume I've ever seen. This monstrosity looked like a black 1960's girdle and was being worn by the otherwise perfectly fine dancer Kazumi. Shades of Rocky Horror Picture Show.

Khariya Mazin - last of the Banat Mazin Ghawazee -- and her band. I got about 45 minutes on video of her dancing with her band outside at the opening gala.

Khariya again.

Pyramid view from Mena House

Pyramid view from Mena House.

Poolside restaurant featuring heavy draped fabric to give a tent-like impression.

Canal in Giza

Canal in Giza. Dead horses were seen on the banks on the way in probably due to a sudden heat wave.

The Nile - going from Giza to Cairo

Mosques. The number of knobs on top of the minarets tell worshipers which of the five daily services the mosque performs.

Dervish show. New location for '06. Show features both a religiously inspired and secular flashy show.

We also did wrangle a private invitation to see dancing Arabian horses. I have to dig out some shots from that.

I also got some footage from a small cafe with musicians in the Khan El Khalili. Amazing singer.

It is easy to find Egypt hot, dirty and unsanitary, but no matter what it is really fascinating. The best quote from this trip was Alexandra's (NY): "It's like being in hell but really, really fun."

Video of the Dervish

Click Here