the cat of aswan


I met so many cats in Egypt that one of them is bound to send me a postcard soon. I took this shot in Aswan.

school in egypt


A classroom in a Nubian village.

trail marker


Taken on todays bike ride

cool crew


On Sunday afternoon we sailed into Hamilton Harbour to have a late lunch at Williams. This is Daniel and crew members Sarann and Carmen.

the real thing


This is the edge of the Sahara Desert – and yes that is a Coca Cola stand on the right!

gotya


I took this shot near Cairo. This is some kind of foam spray these kids were playing with – the idea was simple – chase each other down and spray! It looked like lots of fun.

birthday flowers


I took this shot of flowers at St. Lawrence market and post them today because a couple of special birthdays unfold this week in England.

royal cat


If you think that cats sometimes act aloof like royalty, then you should have met this cat! I was left in no doubt, that this cat was the direct descendent of the Ramses the Great’s cat! I took this shot inside a temple along the Nile – with the permission of the cat of course!

oranges


Oranges at St. Lawrence market, Toronto.

feet at philpott


Feet resting on a pew at Philpott Church.

the mods


After the 1960s I always wondered where the Mods went - I found out - Cairo! Now all I have to do is find the Rockers.

thumbs up


This shot was taken in Memphis (Egypt) with the Canon XTi.

Memphis dates back some 5000 years and is said to the first capital city in the world. I am not so sure about that though, the history of ancient China seems to have kept pace with ancient Egypt in many ways and I think they had at least "Three Sovereigns and Five Emperors" that go back to this period. So I would want to check out what was happening over in China before I agreed that Memphis was the first.
Legend has it that Memphis was founded by Menes who was the king who united Upper and Lower Egypt. I once read in a history book that this unification was considered the point at which "civilization" began. Ironic because the Narmer Palette (a stone with carving on it commemorating this event - the original in the Cairo museum and a copy in the Royal Ontario Museum) shows Menes bashing the brains out of his rival and I am at a loss as to why this event is regarded as the genesis of "civilization." For me a more likely candidate for the start of civilization was Hatshepsut deciding to advance Egypt by trade rather than war - but she was 18th Dynasty and historically rather late - so I am sure there are better examples of peace initiatives that predate this.

Anyway back to the photo - thumbs up indeed - it was so interesting going to the ancient capital and even more exciting to see the Narmer Palette for real in Cairo rather than the copy at the ROM. Thanks to this man, and others like him, for sharing this history with visitors like me.

breakfast



Omelete, toast, coffee and grapefriut juice and playing with a PDA - what better way for a guy to start the day?

nubian home


An entrance to a home in a Nubian village.

I have been experimenting with different size images, most recently with images at 1024 pixels. I have settled on 900 pixels – the size of today’s photo. With the border pixelpost puts around the photo this makes an image of 910 pixels. Likely this is the best size for the monitor resolution of most people visiting.

rube


This is Rube of St. Lawrence Market. Rube knows a thing or two about rice because he owns two stores that sell lots of it. Rube must also know about living well because he told me that he is in his mid-80s and still in great health.

Rube does not have access to the Internet so he can’t see his photo – but I agreed to print a copy and mail it to him – if you know Rube tell him I have not forgotten and he will have a copy soon.

st. lawrence lunch


After a downtown meeting today I popped into St. Lawrence Market to take a few photos and I wandered over to “crepeitup” to get lunch. The person making my crepe said I could take photos of her making it – so I did. The photos turned out okay, but the crepe turned out much better!

end of day on the nile


A shot of a tired looking Nubian trader as a day of hard trading on the Nile draws to a close.

children playing


This must be a really old sign - because shorts and shoes like that is exactly how I used to go to school! I took the shot close to Hamilton Harbour - I was actually looking for swans to photograph but as there were none I got a shot of this sign.

temple of hatshepsut


This is the Temple of Hatshepsut at Deir el-Bahri. Of all the places I wanted to see in Egypt, this was the most important. So many times I have sat in the Royal Ontario Museum looking at these replica carvings and promising myself that I was going to go see the originals in Hatshepsut’s Temple. Unfortunately this was one of the shortest stops we did on the tour – less than 15-minites to look around inside the actual temple – not enough time to find the carvings or some of the other secrets I had read about in the place. Never mind though – it just means that I have to go back!

To understand the significance of this place one has to understand Hatshepsut. Egypt had no provision for a woman to be Pharaoh – but Hatshepsut defied the law and ruled. Also rather than advance Egypt by war, she did so by trade. For a fun way to find about more about Hatshepsut consider reading the book "Child of the Morning" by Pauline Gedge. Although fiction, the major historical facts she bases the book on are largely accurate.

philpott on sunday


This is where I sit every Sunday morning. I often wonder about the people who sat in this spot week after week in the years before – there must have been lots of them because the church has been here for over 100-years.

In the early days of this church it was hard to get a seat inside. Even with 1600 seats there was not enough space for everyone so to accommodate the extra people they broadcast the service to Loew’s Capital Theatre which used to seat 2500, but even then some people could not get in.

Nowadays it can still be hard to find a seat but there is room for everyone - actually that is a part of the church philosophy that anyone can come just as they are - that is why I come and sit here.

alabaster mosque


Inside the Mosque of Muhammad Ali, also known as the Alabaster Mosque.

hieroglyphics


I took this shot at the Temple of Queen Hatshepsut beneath the cliffs at Deir el Bahari. More about this place soon..

kids of karnak


“Hey sis look at this guy! Doesn’t he know how odd he looks sitting on the sidewalk pointing his Canon EOS 5D at us?”

“Try not to laugh at him bro, that would be rude, just pretend that you are smiling for his photo.”

“Good plan sis, but one of these days someone has to tell these tourists how silly they really do look.”

“Too true bro, but in the mean time just smile.”