I'm a Goan woman, working in Mumbai as the founder of a studio called Totem Creative. I try to make the world happier, safer and more meaningful. I believe education, knowledge and awareness, art, writing and creating Social Impact are my means to achieve that end.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Travel Journal - Egypt - Day 2

day 2
3rd June 2012

Woke up early and Puppa's friend dropped us to the airport. The flight took 6 hours. First we were starving so we got just a slice of cake and water for breakfast - but we had a decent lunch at 12. I was royally bored, so I visited the loo twice. In my time there I pondered over how the drainage system in the aircraft worked. Where did my shit go? I know my pee would evaporate. Cut shot, a man many metres below is walking in a park. He hears a distant sound getting louder. He looks up - particles of smelly stuff splats over his face. Cut shot, I give a loud sigh and walk outta the toilet. Maybe something like that.
Watched a funny Jim Carey movie about penguins with half the sound on the shitty inflight earphones and the shared sceen.

We were finally reaching Cairo. We took a kind of turn. The weather outside the window looked scorching, like it was 45 degrees! Although our screens showed 31. I looked down, miles of desert and rock were seen, and we crossed the suez canal and later the nile. I also saw the Pyramids from the top! Mumma spotted them, but I think they weren't the main ones. Apparently there are 98 pyramids all over Egypt. It was overexposed outside. I imagined Mr. Chameleon again, happily crossing the road in its slow dragged speed of 1km/hr. He takes two steps to cross the road and he gets FRIED - royally, and turns upside down with cross eyes. I hope I can animate/board that once I'm back or something. (Theres already a huge list of things to animate).

Once we landed we had to wait for them to finish the forms and transit stuff which look a friggin 1.5 hours!! During that time I took out my sketchbook and tried to inconspiciously sketch all the wonderful people with all their shapes, sizes, hair colours and styles, clothing and gestures. I could spend a whole day doing this without getting bored. Vienna airport was even mmore interesting in terms of people! While I sketched a man approached us and had a chat after looking at me sketching. Later a huge crowd formed and begged me to do one of each one of them! I got super super conscious, but I started churning out sketches of their faces and tearing pages from my book but more kept showing up to get free portraits! :-s So I shook my head and said I'm done and turned towards sis (who is permanently browsing facebook wherever she finds internet). I wanted my sketchbook to last for the rest of the trip!

Finally we were taken to the hotel by an Egyptian Airways bus. After we settled down there we left for the Egyptian Museum - which had the biggest collection of Egyptian history! I couldn't wait! Our guide Sherif was very friendly and cheerful - he must have been around 26, and he knew practically everything about the ancient Egyptians and their stories. Photograhy was not allowed inside, so I tried to take in eveything with my eyes! I loved Egyptian Mytho! I had read shit loads about it since my childhood and it continued to amaze me. What I loved best about their pharoahs and queens was that they were absolutely real. Their beliefs were real, their bodies were real, and their rituals were real. There was so much evidence to prove it. Serif explained to us about the main kings and queens - what indicated a rich king from a poor king, what certain animal forms symbolized, and what the crowns meant. We saw the famous rosetta stone - a black slab on which a direct tranlation of hyroglyphics is written in demolic (language of the egyptian priests) and the roman alphabet!
The bottom two floors consisting all the kings and queens staues and treasures were gorgeous - but we had no idea what was in store for us on the 3rd and last floor.

The WHOLE DAYM FLOOR was devoted t Tutankhamun!!! He was Egypt's most famous king and most youngest king! He changed the religion back to Amun Ra (The sun) after his father's death and made all the Egyptians happy. His father had made the people rebellious because he had broken the norms that had been set for years staing that the main god was Ra. He changed the main god to Aten - god of sexuality - which is why his body is often depicted with a female form but masculine head, or vice versa. Tutankamun was found is a massive sized gold engraved chamber - the size of a room! Inside that were 5 other gold boxes with engravings, each a little smaller than the one it was kept inside. The final three were made of gold, then silver, then one made of food and offering, and lastly - the cast for the mummy - the gold mask that we have seen so many times - the symbol of Egypt. It was gorgeous. It was nothing like the photos. I was overwhelmed looking at all this. I wish we had many more hours left in the museum to stare at everything more deeply, but we had already gotten late for the 8PM sound and light show at the Pyramids.

The sound and light show was great - it highlights the story of king Kiosk - to whom the biggest Pyramid belongs to, and his sons, wife and daughters, to whom the other pyramids belong. It also told us how they were made at the time.

Tomorrow morning we will get to see the Pyramids for real, not from afar. :D

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