Thursday, 3 February 2011

Demonstration outside Luxor Temple, Egypt

Just had the scariest, most terrifying and painful experience of my life over in Luxor City, Cleopatra Street. It lasted at least 20 minutes but it seemed like much, much longer. I went over to Luxor City from the West Bank, crossed the bridge and went into the city centre. There was this demo in support of President Mubarak, THAT WAS FINE I will tell you about it in a moment. The scary experience was having root canal treatment at the dentist, which I wasn’t expecting at all.

Well I hope I have got your attention, all the media outlets, news, TV because that is the kind of sensational reporting you are doing. I wish you would report on Luxor properly so the FCO etc would down grade the travel advice for us. Now let’s have a little non sensational reporting of facts from Luxor.

Back to demo so we are driving along going to the dentist and at the bottom of Station Street, just in front of Luxor temple. There were a maximum of 100 people, some in cars, some on foot. I did not feel at all intimidated and was quite obvious filming on my mobile. They were shouting in support of Mubarak saying “if you go you leave us to burn” and “ElBarade is with the Americans”. If you speak Arabic I think you can hear it quite clearly.

At the dentist there was quite a bit of discussion and this very nice gentleman translated for me. A dentist waiting room is quite a good straw poll as there are Christian and Muslim, men and women, old and young. The only group who probably not represented were the poor. The comments made were
• It is only Samir Farag (governor of Luxor) is 100% bad. Mubarak was good and bad.
• We need Mubarak.
• He kept us out of war (there was quite a lot of nodding of heads at this one)
• Outside (the country) he was good only inside he wasn’t.
• He was surrounded by bad people.

As we drove back it was business as usual in Luxor, men were working on the road putting in kerb stones, quite a lot of cars were speeding as the police aren’t bother with cameras. There was also building works going on as there is nobody controlling that either and if you get a house up it might stay! In Al Gezera village it was normal daily life as well.

So from a peaceful, safe and sunny Luxor salam


Anonymous said...

Wow, the people of Luxor sound delusional. Mubarak chose the people he was surrounded by. If they were bad, it was his choice. I'm surprised anybody actually supports this guy. When I was in Egypt, nobody had anything good to say about "King Hosni." Then again, I was suprised the Palestinians didn't celebrate when Arafat died, and didn't demand his wife and others return the money he stole from them.

Regarding the root canal: don't worry, it's nothing, at least here in the US. The worst part is the boredom because the whole thing takes over two hours, but my dentist whistled and amused me with funny stories about his time in dental school. So, it wasn't bad at all.

Unknown said...

hannie from holland, we have put 4 little films on youtube of the riot in luxor and also of the demonstration of last week

Cheesecakelover said...

I am just off the IM with a good friend who lives on the West Bank. Up to last week he was a tour guide in Sharm. He has a mother and 4 sisters and they have no food. He also says Murbarak is a good man and that its his cabinet who are corrupt. He praises Omar Sulieman to the high heavens....

When I was in Luxor last year - West Bank - everyone I talked to hated what Mubarak had done to the oppress the people for decades. dont know why they changed their minds.

Unknown said...

I was on holiday in Egypt from Jan23rd- Feb 02. Mainly i was in southern egypt, Luxor and Aswan. I did see briefly soom protesters but they were peacefull I even took a few pictures. My friend Nina said they tore down a sign at MC Donalds and continued marching.

The violence really began when the looting started as many prisoners had escaped and began terorrising cairo etc. My tour guide said they even attacked a Nursery.

I saw many ppl protecting there neighbourhoods with barricades and baseball batss

Anonymous said...

Our local Los Angeles Times had an article today that said that even if things get better in Egypt soon, it is expected that Americans will stay away from Egypt for half a year to a year or more. It will take time for perceptions of Egypt to change. Not to mention that a lot of the people I've talked to who are interested in going there one day say they hear about the damage to the Museum, the looting of sites, the damage to tombs, etc., and wonder if there will be anything left to see in Egypt. Surely it will take a while to clean up the mess that must exist at a lot of sites.

BTW, I was talking to one of my coworkers who's from Egypt, and he says his family hates Mubarak, but wants him to stay in power. Why? His brother was hurt in the bombing in Alexandria, and they all fear that without Mubarak the Muslims will wind up killing all the Christians.

Unknown said...

Thank you for your blog, Jane. We are due to arrive in Egypt for 3 weeks holiday at the beginning of March, and are much relieved to hear from you how peaceful Luxor still is. If events carry on as they are at the moment we will cancel our bookings in Cairo and fly straight to Luxor. The main news media seem to be reporting news from the centre of Cairo and nearly ignoring the rest of the country.

Unknown said...

as ann mentioned after travelling through Egypt the past two weeks i feel that Cairo is dangerous at the moment. But Luxor was relatively peacefull.

There was however an extensive military presence protecting tourists. We hada tank outside our Hotel but no armed escorts.

I highly recommend flying to Luxor and southern Egypt especially to see Abu Simbel and the valley of the kings.

Nermine Sami said...

i think people of Egypt still afraid of changes and think the person they know is better than the person they don't.but in myc city Alexandria and also in Cairo many want him to leave.

Unknown said...

Dear Jane,
It is possible to undergo rootcanaltreatment without any pain.
You should get an Antibiotics recipe one week in advance; the inflammation
is then very quiet and anaesthetics will work normaly! I'm a dentist form Holland with a passion for Egypt. One or two times a year I come to Luxor Nile Valley Hotel. Hope to come october/novembre. Best wishes for everyone, Jack Minderaa