Walk like an Egyptian
A small update on my trip. Unfortunately, no watches so far. I am wearing my Omega Speedmaster Pro and I havenÄôt even seen one jeweler selling them. To be honest, I havenÄôt seen a jeweler with watches at all. I have to say that I also didnÄôt have a chance up til now to do a grand tour through the city. I visitted some places to eat (on the streets, seems to be common) and took a boat trip on the Nile.
I am doing a consultancy job here for a large oil company and today I am heading to Tunis to do the same overthere. I hope things are a bit better arranged over there. Egypt is a disaster for me as a European I guess. Last week I got a confirmation that the company I work for booked the Marriott Hotel in Cairo, to be sure, I called the Marriot telling them that I was arriving late and if that was OK. No problem they said. My collegue who is working and travelling with me, did the same thing. When I arrived sunday night (actually Monday morning at 2:00) I called my collegue who was already at the hotel (he flew from London, I went from Amsterdam) and he told me that the Marriott Hotel cancelled our reservations because we didnÄôt confirm with our credit cards. Perhaps they should had ask for it when we called to confirm. Thanks Marriott Hotel, for letting us down at 2 oÄôclock in the night in Cairo, looking for another Hotel with free rooms (even the Hilton and Sheraton were fully booked) up till 5 oÄôclock in the morning. The Marriott can expect a ÄòpepperedÄô letter as soon as I get back.
Anyway, the hotel we found was quite crappy and the next day we managed to get rooms in the Sofitel at the Nile. Very nice and good rooms.
So to be cautious, we confirmed all our other hotels during this trip as well. We also try to confirm the flight this evening. We have boarding passes, but that wasnÄôt a guarantuee they said when we called them to ask about it. They needed our tickets to make the confirmation. We had our tickets send over there by a driver to have everything confirmed. When the driver gave them our tickets, they said they needed our passport as well, even after we asked (by phone) what they exactly needed and we even used the word ÄòpassportÄô. So the driver came back and took our passports for his second trip. This is plain stupid and quite unbelievable, it canÄôt be the language, because my collegue is originally from Egypt and speaks the language here fluently. It is probably the Egyptian way, just like their driving style, everything seems to go unstructured and chaotic. Unbelievable that youÄôll need at least half a day to get your flight and hotel confirmed, even after you confirmed already and got their confirmation as well. They like to have their confirmation confirmed probably. Oh, well, just have to lower my expectations a bit probably, even from the greater names as ÄòMarriottÄô.