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[Entry 4] The museum and crossing the street are equally interesting.

02 December 201011:18PMepic-triptravel

Today we visited the Cairo museum, which is on the package tour thing we're doing but only for half a day, so we figured we could do with another half a day there. The museum is typically Egyptian- nothing is labelled, there's no apparent order to the exhibits, and people trying to spruik stuff outside. Also, no photography. It was packed full of tourists, all in little groups with tour leaders and stuff... I guess that'll be us in a couple of days. We got in early before the line for the mummies got too long.

The mummies... I was surprised how short they were. You sort of expect someone like Ramses III who conquered entire kingdoms to be a little taller. I don't know whether it was some side effect of the mummification or whether they really were just short. Other than being short they were incredibly well preserved. Some of them still had hair. That was kind of mind-blowing, that there was a guy in front of you who died several thousand years ago and you could still see that he had longish brown hair and a bald patch.

For some reason the rooms which I spent the most time in were the ones with the manuscripts and inscriptions in them. I don't understand ancient Egyptian, but just something about the fact that they were supposed to mean something, that whatever was on them was important enough to be worth writing down. It makes everything else just look like stuff. I think I could go for learning to read some kind of ancient language. As far as useful skills go, it's really high up there, you know?

We had dinner at a place called Shabrawy, which we were told by the guy at reception sold this stuff called Koshari, which is meant to be a typical Egyptian. It didn't, but it did give us a decent Egyptian style meal, with Falafel and chicken spicysomething, and stuffed vine leaves and flatbreads and all that. The restaurant was this weird sort of semi-fast-food place, with tables and tiles like HJs, but with proper plates.

On the way back we ducked down these little side-streets, with shops and stalls and people. There are people everywhere, even at night. They don't go and sit at home, they hang out in the streets. There was probably a point to saying that, but I don't know what it was. But something I really need to work on is not feeling uncomfortable going into that kind of side street and exploring and looking around. The locals don't care- they either don't notice or find it a massive novelty, and here in particular the crime rate is really low, so there's nothing to be uncomfortable about. On some level I think I already know that, because once we get back into the tame surrounds of the hotel I think it's really boring and want to go out again. It's just while I'm out there I need to relax a bit. Maybe.

Just for teh lulz: Here's a video of how you cross a road in Cairo. Mum, if you're reading this, you should probably not watch.

[EDIT: I uploaded the wrong video.]

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