I spent the weekend in Cairo on business. Despite being absolutely exhausted from the flight I had a great meeting today with the client. I even had time to ride horses out to the pyramids in Giza with my co-worker. The sun was setting behind the dunes and the Pyramids were disappearing slowly into the night. The smells of the market were everywhere as the mosque loudspeaker called the faithful to evening prayers.
I arrived yesterday from Toronto connecting in Frankfurt. I changed and after what I can only characterize as a terrible misadventure with the ensuite bidet, immediately headed to the Cairo Museum which was conveniently located adjoining my hotel. I have been to Cairo before but never made it to the museum. It is everything you can imagine and more. And it is packed--there are still unopened crates of more recent discoveries lining the hallways everywhere. They are building a new much larger national museum near the Pyramids.
After the museum I headed over to Al Halili market in the old city. It was getting late and one of the many english speaking "sales agents" encouraged me to follow him into the Delta Papyrus Center (21 El Ghouria St., 3FL No. 17, El Darb El Ahmar, Cairo) to check out the hand made art work. After paying for a couple of scripts I noticed something very unexpected. Right there under the desk glass were dozens of business cards and one of them belonged to Daniel Pearl, the Wall Street journal reporter who was kidnapped and murdered in Karachi, Pakistan. Now that was unnerving.
I finished off the day with dinner at Abou El Sid, probably one of the best Egyptian restaurants in Cairo.