Amy of ‘Soccer Ball and Conference Calls’ was curious about the location of my header (before I ruthlessly trash it). I figured I’d make a story of it since I’m out of ideas for the day and the kids only have three hours in camp.
When my two year Peace Corps stint was over, Chris, Rena and I decided we hadn’t had enough of filtering our water and squatting in pit latrines. I had a cast iron stomach and thighs that could crush walnuts – I should take advantage of this while I have it, yeah? Another few months of hard traveling were in order. (Nut crushing thighs are achieved by reading mail while copping a squat over a pit latrine for 10 minutes.)
There are plenty of stories, most of which involve drying our underwear on bushes, but I’ll go with my header and tell you about our day at the Valley of the Kings near Luxor, Egypt.
We had done most of our sightseeing on our own, but felt the Valley of the Kings warranted a guide. Oh, and we got a tour guide alright – Mahmoud, who dubbed his tour group “Sunshine” and would call out “Sunshine” on his bullhorn to herd us like cattle to the next site. I’d say that ten times of hearing “Sunshine” yelled over a bullhorn was a mental limit and going back over my travel diary, I have written that the gist of the tour was “hurry up and shut up”.
(from the journal) - Dec. 27 Mahmoud “Sunshine” describing Hatshepsut’s Temple for the billionth time – “You will remember you’re still looking at the very famous temple…”
On our tour, we met a fellow American named Jose who pretty much had everything stolen in Cairo, and turned out to be a fascinating guy. It’s 12 years later and I can’t remember what made him so fascinating, but Jose and I joined ourselves at the hip immediately. We entered our own little personal world of you’re-the-most-interesting-person-I’ve-ever-met and missed getting our ID’s back from Sunshine at one point. Sunshine comes over to lecture us, we laugh it off and everyone just stares at us like we have a third head.
We shuffled with the rest of the group, endured a few more hard stares, saw fascinating things, got lectured on the idle chit chat a few more times and then join everyone walking back to the tour bus. Jose stops to haggle for a carving, and we get on the bus where we have more deep discussion. At least as deep as you can have with a guy that you met 2 hours ago. Which in our case was pretty deep because 10 minutes later I look around and the bus is empty. Jose and I had gotten on the wrong tour bus and everyone else was GONE.
Aw crap. I could only imagine the wrath of Sunshine when he found us missing. We scrambled off the bus and immediately found a taxi to catch up with our group. We attempted to slip back into the herd, but no one was slipping in on Sunshine’s watch. There was a bullhorn lecture from Sunshine and a pissed off Australian added his two cents. If only “talk to the hand” existed back then.
After the tour, we parted ways. Jose – wherever you are – that was the funnest afternoon I ever had. SUNSHINE! SUUUUUNSHIIIIIINE!
Posted at Humor-Blogs.