Cruising the Nile – Egypt

Along the Nile River, the scenery is ever-changing.  The calm, lazy water is a dark grayish green, often brightened by a passing felucca with its large white sails billowing in the breeze; or even a Nubian boy, paddling a tiny wooden rowboat by hand while singing a cheerful sailing song in surprisingly good English.
On one side of the river is the Sahara, stark and desolate, its pale golden sands burning in the sun.  On the other, lush green palm trees and farmers’ fields, where people use cattle to plow, and move crops in carts pulled by donkeys.
The farmland gives way to unfinished brick cities, full of tall, roofless buildings topped by the massive satellite dishes that went out of fashion 20 years ago in the US.  The old dishes often keep company with animals, such as goats, chickens, or geese in rusted cages.  Some of the buildings have been plastered and painted, creating a bright spot of eggshell blue or cherry red among the sun-bleached cement and brick.
At dusk, the hazy gray sky burns yellow and orange as the sun sinks into the glistening silver river.  Away from the city lights, the palm trees and desert sand dissolve into the eerie blackness of 4000 years ago.  All is still and silent, but only for a few moments, until the deck lights chase away the specters of Isis and Osiris, and it’s happy hour for the rest of the night.

Pictures can be viewed as a slideshow here.

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