Egypt - Lake Nasser
We set sail around 1700 and enjoyed views of Lake Nasser as the sun went down. In the evening we passed Abu Simbel and we were treated to views of the floodlit Great Temple with its four impressive statues 20m tall.
Thu 18 Dec
It was good to be in a proper bed once again. We left the porthole open and enjoyed the lake breeze and crashing of waves as our ship headed into the wind. I hadn't bothered to set the alarm as we would be on the boat for the morning. In the event I enjoyed watching sunrise across the lake (about 0615 Egyptian time). I had slept well. I enjoyed an extortionately priced Arabic breakfast with fuul (brown bean sauce) and flat breads and later met up with the other westerners for a coffee.
At 1100 we were told (rather urgently I thought) that we had arrived but we should wait in the first class lounge for immigration clearance. That sounded privileged if not efficient, but no, it was not to be. We waited ages to get a stamp in our passports and were then told to "wait downstairs". We queued behind the doors opposite the gangplank only to learn that no one would be allowed off the boat (and into Egypt) until everyone had been processed. I retired to an upper deck, found a corner out of the wind and sat in the warmth of the winter sun to write my diary.
After three hours I went back to find Michael and Clara still at the doors with many other passengers now behind them. I got angry with the policeman and said it was ridiculous we'd paid good money for first class tickets and tourist visas and we were only visiting for a few days, keeping us waiting for such a significant time was unacceptable. I'm sure he didn't understand a word but as I stamped my walking stick showing my impatience there was a murmur of support (or was it amusement?) from the Sudanese around me. Remarkably, it seemed to do the trick. He went and got his mate who took our passports and led just the three of us off the ship and through the terminal building.
Egypt - Lake Nasser