Egypt part 4

Everyone managed to drag themselves out of bed in time to go to the Hassan Hassan show at Felfela village. I had to stop off for a fitting at Eman’s so I missed the excitement of the tuk tuk rides and the earlier acts on the bill (including a comedian who went down like a lead balloon at the English speaking table, unsurprisingly). I and the other two arrived just in time to see the show. It’s a selection of folklore dances with a very loose storyline and lots of knockabout humour which everyone can appreciate. The troupe consists of three men and three women, plus Hassan, who sings and dances his way through every single number – he has incredible energy! We saw haggala, tannoura (“Oh good, more tannoura. We haven’t seen enough of those this week.”), saidi (including a cameo from my husband!) and a sketch with soldiers (and their newest recruit, Moyra!). In fact only one of the styles we studied in our lesson in the end 🙂 so I will just have to find some videos for my students to watch!

It’s the end of the week and with everything we’ve crammed in people are starting to get tired so it was a quiet evening after that, although a small group squeezed in a singing lesson with Emad. I hope we’ll be hearing the results at the party night 🙂 Dinner was at Abu Sid, a gorgeous restaurant nearby with lovely food and a particularly special cocktail – asab (sugar cane juice) and tequila. This proved very popular with the group, so much so that we drank them out of asab! Three of us went on to Outside, a bar at the Nile Maxim, to hear Ellie of London sing at their Friday night party. This was something different again, a chance to see how young Egyptians and expats let their hair down and party. It was lots of fun, great atmosphere and a nice international mix of music which got everyone up and dancing, but we called it a night at 1:00am so as not to be too tired for our final day.

That day began with something new to me – camel riding! Yes, despite my many trips to Egypt I have never ridden a camel before and I’m sorry I put it off so long because it is great fun. I never knew what an extraordinary range of noises they make. Yasmina took us to the stable she uses, so we knew the animals there were well looked after, and we spent an hour riding around with a few stops for photos with the pyramids in the background. Camel riding will be compulsory for everyone on the next trip!

Most people have gone off to the Moroccan spa to have the camel dirt and smell scrubbed off them before going back to Yasmina’s for our final night party. I’m heading off for a little more shopping (can’t quite believe I haven’t bought any shoes yet!) but don’t worry, I’ll shower before the party…