Egypt: A day beside the pool and an evening out
Oh it felt good to sleep in. We almost missed breakfast time as we stayed in bed for so long.
We spent the day beside the pool soaking up the heat (Switzerland is now in the cool 11/12 degree range) and trying to stay in the shade.
My sister-in-law and I had been wanting to go into Hurghada to check it out and do some shopping. I really didn’t want to bring the wee babe with us as all she would want to do is breast feed, probably cry and want only me so I wanted to leave her with my hubby (he was ok with that) when we went. But due to the heat and the timing we decided to go altogether and take her along. My SIL also wanted to experience an Egyptian restaurant (rather than the resort food) and I couldn’t blame her but with the wee babe’s witching hour being right at dinner time, I felt it was a better idea if we parted ways and the hubby, tweenager, wee babe and I head back to the resort and the in-law’s head out for dinner.
My sister-in-law had been talking with the guy whom we bought the snorkeling trip off of. It seemed that he had a 3 hour city tour that he could hook us up with for cheap. Ali is his name. My SIL wasn’t totally sure we should pay the price as she felt we were going to get ripped off if we went this route but with 7 people it’s probably better than trying to organize it with taxis plus we didn’t know what to expect in Hrughada.
We walked out to the area where we were supposed to meet him. It all felt a little sketch.
He showed up in a van/bus. It was the most ricketyist thing you’ve ever seen. I asked if there were seat belts (the wee babe was in her car seat of course). He said no but assured me it was safe. I told him we needed seat belts at least for the wee babe. He said it was fine, and it was totally safe. Everyone was looking at me to decide what was going to happen here… were we going to go without seat belts, or were our family going to head back to the resort and let the in-laws go have fun. I spoke harshly and said that accidents happen all the time and there’s no way to know when and where it’s going to happen so I didn’t want to take the chance. Ali then said that he would get a taxi for us with a seat belt. The pressure was too much and I began to cry.
A few minutes later a taxi drove up. I got in the back seat and the hubby put the baby beside me and then we realized that the female part of the seat belt wasn’t there. I said there wasn’t a seat belt. The taxi driver then proceeded to tell me it was safe, no worries. By this point I was freakin’ done. I tried to get out of the back seat and the taxi driver put his arm up in my way. Oh no you don’t!!! I yelled out NO! and grabbed the baby (with car seat) and started walking back to the decrepid van that held the rest of our family while my hubby (much more rational than I) was fishing out the seat belt. I was yelling my SIL’s name and waving my arms. “I’m outta here” I kept thinking and then I heard my hubby yell that he got it out and we could continue into town now.
So I get back in, the wee babe get’s strapped in, and off we go. Immediately, the wee babe starts crying. From what I understand, the city of Hurghada is only 10 mins away so she’s ok to cry for 10 mins. Well, the taxi driver starts to get a bit antsy… asking why she’s crying. Asking if there’s anything we can do to make her stop… pointing to his boob and asking if she breast feeds… So he thinks that turning up his Arab music is going to help. Really? By this point, I was completely frazzled. I stuck my boob in her mouth to shut her up and just sobbed in the back seat.
We finally made it to town.
We did some shopping and got right ripped off. You see, there are no price tags in Egypt. Everything is negotiable. So the tour guide brought us to the shops that he knows the vender. What I’m sure that happens is the vender and him have an agreement that if he brings the tourists there, the vender will give him a cut. So we paid way too much because we didn’t shop around and see if there could have been better prices. Which there were.
Oh and the whole while the wee babe wanted to breast feed and she cried for only me. It was awesome.
My SIL was pissed. She said that we could have taken a taxi into town for way less and not got ripped off. She’s right. Lesson learned. Do it yourself next time. The only thing is that we didn’t know what downtown Hurghada was like so it was impossible to know ahead of time that we could have done it ourselves.
By the time we got back to the hotel, I was spent and couldn’t wait to go to bed.
Tomorrow will be our last day in Egypt and if you can believe it, the only person who didn’t get Montezuma’s Revenge was the wee babe, thankfully.