Egypt - Pyramids
Sun 21 Dec
Day 100, and the last day of my tour. I got up reasonably early and off to the pyramids. It occurred to me that whenever I have been previously I have always been encumbered by a tour bus, guide(s) and a group, so for once I took the metro and went on my own. When I got to Giza I took a back road and found a few stables and what someone reassured me were government horses. I'm not sure what the relevance of this was but they looked well fed and cared for. I negotiated a fee for a horse ride and was promised this included everything (no additional entrance fee, camera fee, guides, watchmen). I wasn't sure if I believed this so we agreed I would pay afterwards. A chap called Hassim lead my horse at first and then explained how to control it. It was all quite comfortable till we tried trotting (how are you supposed to avoid thumping the saddle?) but became quite good fun once we were off the road and he suggested galloping up a sandy hill.
We soon got views of the pyramids and Cairo beyond. There were other tourists around but not enough to get in the way of each other's photographs. The horses and camels seem to skirt the south side where there are several viewpoints I've not been to so I was pleased for the new experience.
Back at the hotel I enquired about the room and was told the manager wanted to see me. Magdi welcomed me into his office like I was a friend of his family. In a very showy way he picked up the phone and said I should be upgraded to a nicer room, seemingly completely overlooking that they were apparently full. He had worked for seven years at the Holiday Inn on Plymouth Hoe (UK) before joining the Hilton group in London. He also knew where I would find a street market nearby so I could get some dates to take home for Christmas.
Egypt - Pyramids