3 & 4 April ’04. Saturday and Sunday. The “fast ferry” was to leave at 8am and according to the ticket package they wanted us there 2 hours early but, the person who sold us the ticket said 1 hour was plenty. As it was, we were the 2nd to arrive and REAL early. When the crowd started to come they seemed to arrive all at once. One thing we found was, as the crowd arrived, they all pushed to the front of the line...lesson learned. Let me tell you, we had heard that no one recognizes the formation of a line and that is a fact. You’ve got to learn to get right up there and set yourself for the position that you want and HOLD IT UNDER ALL COSTS !!!!
The ferry was actually quite large and handled cars as well in the crossing of the Red Sea. It was to last 90 minutes but because of the heavy seas that we encountered it was just a little over that. The inside was like getting into a Boeing 747 except the windows were about 2 feet wide and 10 feet high and was quite nice and comfy.
It was somewhat unexpected by me but, it was full. That would have been about 250-300 people. The music that seems to be played almost everywhere, including the ferry, is western pop and it’s also interesting that we hear “Christmas” music quite a lot. We met young man and his son from Keiv that was sitting in front of us. One of the things that Louise and I are doing is flying by our shoestrings on these ventures so we don’t normally have any idea were we might find ourselves staying the night. Well Sergai helped us make our decision in this case. After we went through the baggage and security check (for the second time) he came and found us. He was holding his ride for us just in case we might want to check out his hotel. Well, here we are….and it is quite nice and is costing us $50US a night including breakfast and taxes.
We will be here for 4 days at least. This afternoon we laid by the pool and headed out to the Sharm City Market this evening. This place (Sharm el Sheikh), reminds both of us of Cabo San Lucas in a lot of ways but quite honestly, Cabo would appreciate the comparison a lot. This is a very nice spot and I would recommend it to anyone who wanted to find a great vacation location and it just happens to have one of the finest snorkeling and diving spots in the world. Now I must get this in print….. every time you go out for a walk here in Egypt you’ve just got to remember…. The car has the right away and lo the pedestrian !!!! You’ve got cars on the road driving full out and no headlights !!! They do run with these little running lights and as they approach you on the road as you are crossing they start flashing their lights, honking their horn and it seems like they start aiming right for you as they step on the gas!!! It make’s it quite exciting for all. If your riding in a cab it doesn’t change for the pedestrian out there and it becomes a “white knuckle” ride for those of us in the cab. The vehicle rules the road!!! Now, when it comes to other vehicles on the road, well I’ll get to that later…it’s a good story on it’s own. Sunday, we jumped on a free bus to explore Naama Bay. Very picturesque with low rise hotels lining the beach area. Each hotel had their “Private Beach” but in between about every 3 private beach there was a public beach area.
Just about all you could see the full length of the beach was umbrellas with chaise lounge chairs everywhere. Lots of restaurants lined the “Promenade” which ran the whole length between the hotels and the beach. There is good snorkeling right off the beach and again the water is wonderful… It seems like the largest group of tourists comes here from Italy and Russia. We stand out with our “accent” every time we speak. I think that we have only been I.D.’d as Americans only twice. One thing for sure, we have always been greeted with a warm “welcome”…. we do feel welcome every time and in every way. This has been a great trip!!!!