Friday, April 9, 2010

Luxor: Part 2

We cross the Nile river in a  little boat, and begin our Luxor: Part 2 adventure.  We soon begin to realize that Luxor doesn't just have a few historical sites here and there, but that much of  the land, and probably so much undiscovered land is full of history!  And because there is so much to see and all the people are spread out looking at so many of them, a lot of sites feel empty; which is a really neat feeling.  One pretty incredible site we got to see that day was the Valley of the Kings; tombs within in a valley.  Not only are these tombs within a valley in the middle of the desert, but all the tombs go down and under; pretty far down and steep steps.  Tombs are for the pharaohs and these tombs are very secretive, so secretive that the people that built the tombs were killed.  
One tomb that really blew our mind:  We walked up the first set of steep steps that were about 30 feet, and then another set of steps that were around 10 feet.  Once we were at the top of this cliff, we began to walk down the steep steps and into the tomb.  How the Egyptians were able to get that high with a sarcophagus is beyond me.
When walking down into the tombs, they had paintings on the wall and hieroglyphics all along as well.  The entrance of many of the tombs had life and death/protection hieroglyphics, and many of the paintings were so intact.  Within the tomb was the sarcophagus, and within the sarcophagus we could see carvings on the inner walls; one with a woman on one side, a man on the other, and above was the woman and the man united.
We continued our day looking at history, and finished by  heading back to our hotel and watching a belly dancer/spinning man show.  Ok, I should probably know the name of men that spin but I don't so in this story they will be “the spinning men.”  The show was in a  amphitheater of our hotel which overlooked the Nile river.  At night it was great to see the Nile with boats passing by with their lights on.  The belly dancer was not so good, but the spinning man, wow.  I don't know how he didn't get dizzy, but he just kept spinning and spinning for at least 10-15 minutes and while he was spinning he had on a layered skirt that would spin different directions. (A little hard to explain so in this case, a picture is worth a thousand words)

After the show, we all took a little nap and then headed over to the train station (which we were excited about because it was a sleeping train and none of us had ever been on one of those!)  The rooms were really quite functional; when we arrived the room was set up like oversized airplane seats, and here we ate our dinner.  After dinner, we brushed our teeth in our little sink with a mirror and there was even an area in the top region of our room to put our luggage.  When dinner was over, the train attendant came in and converted our eating space into bunk beds! (So functional)  That night I slept like a baby and when we woke, breakfast was served and we were off  to the Cairo Marriott where we spent our first few nights.  When we arrived, we find out that there are no more rooms available.... they tell us of the JW Marriott outside the city, and so we head over there.  This hotel was intensely beautiful, and by far the nicest hotel room I've ever stayed in.  The rooms had mahogany wood everywhere, big balconies, great bathroom floors, granite coutertops and the detail within the room made it top notch.  We found out that the hotel is a 7 star hotel, although we hear there is only one true 7 star hotel in the world (in Dubai, what a surprise)  Either way the hotel was out of our world and we enjoyed every minute of it.

The indoor pool was spectacular, nicest pool I've swam in.   Bren and I  were on their rock climbing wall for some time, which was fun and quite a work out.  My parents, Bren and I had dinner and shortly after my parents were off in a taxi and on their way to the airport, back to Huntington Beach, CA.  Waking up the next morning was strange because we were so used to waking up, calling our parents in their room and heading to breakfast...  No parents to hang with, and it was a weird feeling.  Such an unforgettable trip we had and time that will always be treasured.

Felt like we were in Indiana Jones

Dad checking it out

A modern day statue

Getting some dancing in on the sleeping train

Still dancing and got the gansta face going

Us throughly enjoying the JW Mariott

The indoor pool (there was cool lighting on the ceiling that reflected on the water)

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