My visa has been extended for six months, I have to be out of the country by May 12th 2008, although they would have no problem extending it further if need be. They are happy that people visit. The process was not to bad. They didn’t ask any questions, just smiled and giggled at the little Arabic I know.
I went up stairs after two security checks, found out that I needed two photo copies of my passport and visa that I got at the airport. Then I found out I needed one more, went downstairs for one more, one pound per copy. 5.5 pounds to the dollar by the way. I went back upstairs and filled out the application. Went over to another window and bought the visa stamps for 11 pounds, then handed everything to the lady at the window. I left for two hours and went back to pick it up and guess what? the process was completed. I got there ten minutes after the place opened – good thing, the place was packed with people by the time I got back. What a rat race of a place.
Basically, if you don’t get pegged by a car walking across the street, or you don’t go nuts because of the continual noise of honking, then the smog just might put you down for the count, or the second hand smoke. Although, for the largest city in Africa, and the ninth largest city in the world with over 15 million people, Cairo is a very safe city. Nobody is going to try to steal your belongings, or cause any problems, they are very friendly people. At first people can seem very intimidating, although they have strong cultural belief system of being hospitable, and this goes way back thousands of years.
I woke up early last night because my hours are a tad bit off. The people that work on the night shift invited me to have dinner and we had a great conversation. Everyone has miss conceptions of the other country. Each country really doesn’t understand each other cultures. I have learned much already. Everyone knows that there are good people and bad people in each race, culture and nation. Bottom line problem – the governments of the world.
I am planing on sticking to my plan, which is to head to Alex on Saturday and head toward Siwa for awhile. Then I will head back to Cairo and thoroughly explore before I head to the Nile valley. I have not taken any pictures yet. I am planning on visiting the Egyptian Museum tomorrow. I will try to have some pictures for everyone real soon.