Out of the desert, having failed (so far) to find a route into Libya.
So I’ve ended up in Alexandria, which feels less Egyptian than Mediterreanean. The people sway along nonchalantly rather than hurry frenetically, the air is flavoured with salty humidity from the nearby sea (just a street away) instead of sandy dryness, and there are far fewer headscarves.
(On those accursed headscarves: after three weeks in the Middle East, whoa, how I’m missing the sight of female flesh. I don’t mean nudity, just the sight of bare legs or arms, maybe the occasional canyon of cleavage. It’d just be nicer. I mean, do Muslim builders wolf-whistle girls in burkhas, with “C’mon darlin’, get yer *face* out for the boys”?)
My Cairo booking agent screwed up badly, though: instead of an aircon room with bath I’ve got a box with a fan. This almost defeated me earlier; felt really down. Couldn’t understand why; I’ve slept in far worse. Until I realised my frustration resulted from not having eaten in 36 hours; I was running on empty. (In the desert you drink so much water that you don’t feel hungry, and you forget about little things like taking on protein.)
Remedied that just now at Nasser, a seafront seafood see-and-be-seen place, where the fish platter has to be seen to be believed. I think I’ve found my dining option for the next three days.