Monday, March 28, 2011

Arrival in Cairo

Welcome to Egypt!

We had two relatively easy flights to get to Cairo. Houston to London on the big 777 up in the front cabin. Now that’s an experience I’d like to repeat again and again! I had lobster over sea bass for dinner--we kind of forgot that we were in a plane since it was more like being in a fine dining establishment! The lay flat beds were excellent and we were able to relax if not enter into REM sleep. I think it was well worth cashing in our long-saved frequent flyer miles.

At Heathrow in London, we visited the Business Lounge which was very nice with super comfortable chairs, lots of free food and drinks available. The airport itself was not attractive and in need of a redo. The departure gate was very far away from the lounge so I got a wheelchair escort. Our bmi flight to Cairo was delayed on the tarmac for 45 minutes but again being in the big seat was a plus--lots of room to stretch out.

We got to Cairo only 10 minutes later than scheduled.  Mo(hamed) met us at the customs and instructed us through the nice and modern Cairo airport. We located our bags and off we went. Mohamed, our tour representative, met us with a nice bouquet of flowers and he and Mo led us to the minivan where driver Tarik was waiting. It was a bit of a hike because apparently the rules about cars picking you up at arrivals changes daily; he had to park and wait for us to come to him. We were in a nice air conditioned minivan and on our way to the Mena House Oberoi across town.

Me and bro with Mo(hammed)

At the Cairo airport

During the hour and a half drive, Mohammed introduced us to Cairo and explained about our next few days planned activities, Tarik maneuvered us through the streets of Cairo and we marveled at the amazing scenes of daily cairene life. Mo(hamed) got out after a little while to go home. The traffic was heavy and moved slowly. It reminded me of driving in Sicily but with more animals and people crossing the road, more honking and confusion. It was exciting and foreign--definitely not the US!

We arrived at the peaceful Mena House Oberoi and our first surprise from our intrepid guide, Mr. Ahmed Hamed Yousif, was presented in the form of room 334--pyramids view room--Spectacular! We can see the pyramids from the bed!!! We also had beautiful flowers from our Mena House hosts and a cake to celebrate the 0/5 birthday.

Our gorgeous room at Mena House Oberoi

After taking a few photos, showering and pinching ourselves (are we really in Cairo looking at the Pyramids from our bed?) we headed out to a light dinner at Khan al-Khalili restaurant. It was all delicious and perfect. Back to the room around 10pm to go to bed on our first night in Cairo. We are to finally meet Ahmed Hamed Yousif at 8am tomorrow!

So far, so amazing…

No comments:

Post a Comment