“you would like to buy dancing camel?”

…asked the adorably filthy little urchin. “no, I don’t want no damn camel” i huffed. “i’ve already been shanghaied by a man on a camel once today, and i haven’t quite gotten over it, thank you.” he raised the stuffed camel to my face misinterpreting my excitement and demonstrated how the camel moved its head back and forth. Immensely unimpressed, i decided ignoring him was a much better tactic and turned to my immediate left to gaze upon a four thousand year old structure shaped like a kitty with a man head. or a woman head. to be perfectly honest, i found it to be rather androgynous, and not like in a cool and mysterious glam-rock david bowie sort of way, but actually more in the way that you just feel awkward not knowing whether to refer to it as a he or she for fear of ridicule. i’m referring, of course, to the beautiful limestone monument known as the sphinx which you likely remember from the famous magic carpet ride sequence in the hit disney movie, Aladdin, starring gilbert gottfried. it seemed to me that the shared sentiment of the others in my company was that the sphinx was a lot smaller in person than they had expected. i, however, felt that Aladdin gave me an excellent idea of the relative size of the stone beast, and thus stood humbled, but unsurprised.

“other people?” you ask, “but alex, I thought it was just you and megatron on this fool’s holiday of yours.” friend, I answer you with a sincere piece of advice: sign up for couch surfing. seriously, do it right now. Here’s a link: www.couchsurfing.com . i won’t even be offended if you take a breather from reading my amazingly entertaining blahg post to do so. but i genuinely can’t recommend it more. whether you plan on traveling in the near or distant future and need a place to stay or just want to talk to a local about some friendly travel advice, couchsurfing is an invaluable resource that i have quickly fallen in love with and intend to use considerably for the duration of my travels and thereafter. we’ve been here not three days and have already made friends from cairo, jordan and some wretched sounding place called dayton, ohio. our second night in egypt, megan and i attended a meeting set up for couch surfers and benevolent affiliates in the cairo area where we met a delightful young egyptian named aymen (and yes, bisco fans, I was excited that his name sounded like i-man) who asked us if he could take us to the pyramids the following day within about 10 minutes of meeting us. we met amr and dina, a gay jordanian and his adorable and bubbly, tiny eqyptian female counterpart, who insisted we come to amr’s aunt’s home the following evening for a home cooked egyptian meal. and we met laura and mike, a father-daughter traveler duo from the midwest with six months on the road behind them and six months on the road in front of them. i immediately took to their fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants travel attitude, and they took to my pearly american teeth and rapist wit. all across the board, the meeting was a rip-roaring success.

sure enough, the next morning aymen picked us up at 10 am on the dizzle in front of hardy’s (if you ever wondered what happened to all the hardy’s in the states, they’ve inexplicably migrated to egypt) and off to the pyramids we went. oddly enough, even though aymen had lived next to the pyramids for 20 years of his life, he confessed to us that had never actually been to them. but one way or another our enthusiasm seemed to rub off on him and he became just about as excited as we were. the difference being he knew a considerable more about the history and names of shit, and i just kept thinking about how ridiculously awesome it would have been to see the grateful dead play here whenever it was that they rocked egypt’s tits off twenty or thirty some-odd years ago. i won’t bore you with all the sexy details (and i’ll post some picys below as they are collectively worth thousands of words and i consider myself a merciful and understanding keeper of the human attention span) but incidentally, if you’re in the market to build a house anytime soon, i seriously recommend have an egyptian architect draw up the blueprints and a team of jewish slaves to bring it on home. i’ve seen the results firsthand and you will NOT be disappointed (mention my name and get 50% off an estimate).

schmying about ancient pyramids all day can really work up the old appetite something fierce, so it was off to lunch for some koshery. from what I understand, koshery is about as egyptian as a meal can get. i say this because aymen took us out for lunch to a restaurant that specialized in it and then amr’s aunt prepared us the very same dish for dinner that very same night. everyone involved wanted us to treat us to authentic egyptian fare, and because both parties served us the same meal, the only conclusion i could draw is that this koshery stuff is the real deal. i’m talkin the primo, diggity-dank, ricey-noodley, garlicy, fried-oniony, chick peay, lentily grail of all harmonious bowls of mush. i truly did not mind eating it twice in one day. then after an intense and eye opening post-dinner conversation about homosexuality in the middle east (apparently its widely accepted in beirut. there and kansas city, right? who knew?) in which, in an incredible and admirable act of bravery, amr told us he actually came out of the closet on national television on a show about being gay in the middle east, we played “never have I ever” until pinky (sunburned megan) had to be put to bed. that’s actually where i should be now too as i will be getting up early tomorrow to meet up with more couchsurfers to tour Islamic cairo. so goodnight, moon. And goodnight, mush (or koshery or whatever).

023

the camel's name was columbus. didn't catch the little dude's name.

the camel's name was columbus. didn't catch the little dude's name.

i Can HAz FrIEndS GoOD

i Can HAz FrIEndS GoOD

FOR THE LAST TIME NO I DO NOT WANT A DANCING CAMEL

FOR THE LAST TIME NO I DO NOT WANT A DANCING CAMEL

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7 Responses to ““you would like to buy dancing camel?””

  1. these pictures are wonderful! and that koshery sounds quite lovely too. I am glad but unsurprised that you are making friends, brothercup. I am also glad and quite surprised to hear that the middle-east is so pro-homo. rock on, queer world!

    love and miss you.

  2. eril horriblewitz Says:

    Alex & Megan > Nicholas Cage in National Treasure 2: Book of Secrets

  3. Sallah, I said NO camels! That’s FIVE camels; can’t you count?

  4. SJ Mazer Says:

    Okay sonny, i hope you meant rapier wit and not rapist wit!!!
    I wonder if I can get Dad to couch surf with me in Egypt? Love u to amph and beyond. Mom

  5. Yo.

    Glad you guys are having a fun time. Your pictures look awesome.

    Can you bring me back a dancing camel or is it too late???

    Have fun, stay safe, and all that other stuff.

    Sam

  6. Have you been bombarded with thousands of “WHAT IS YOUR NAME”s yet!??

    and hot DAMN I am craving some kush now!

  7. Chelsea T Says:

    So as I sit here @ 245am, pulling guard, just a bit over a day from being commissioned…. I am insanely jealous of your travels. The pics are fantastic and the stories remind me of the two of you!!! Go figure just as I head back to the DC/MD area u 2 crazies head out.

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