Day 1 – Arrival in Cairo
Day 1 started super early. My alarm went off at 4:20am but I had already been up for a bit. I packed up the rest of my house. Mostly dishes that I had left to dry the night before. I did this because while I am gone movers will be coming to change my apartment and move me up stairs. Then I made sure my laptop and chargers were packed before I went down to get a taxi.
I tried to use my Taxi app to call a taxi to me but there were none in the area. So I had to stand at the road and wait. After about 15 minutes a taxi drove by and stopped for me. Turns out he drove one of my co-workers to school the previous year. He took me to the airport for a fair price of 5KD. The time of morning meant it was a bit more expensive than the regular 3-4KD, but I new this.
Then it was check in and go have breakfast to Chili’s restaurant. I had Crispy Chicken Tacos and tea. It didn’t feel like breakfast but at 5:30am they were not yet set up to serve breakfast. I found that strange but what ever.
Then it was to Bahrain for a quick layover and then to Cairo. At Cairo the line to get through immigration was ridiculous. I quickly paid my 25US$ for my entry visa and went to line up with at least 3 other planes worth of people. They had 6 counters to process maybe 1000 people. We were in line for over an hour. Then we go to get our bags and they are not a the conveyor belt. I’m not sure in this is slowness on their part or planning so that bags wouldn’t be unattended. Because about 5 minutes after people started crowding around the bags started coming. Then it was through customs and off to get an ATM. At the ATM I was approached/accosted by a guy trying to get my to take his companies taxi. I told him no I don’t have money and he left for a bit until I was done with the ATM, then he was back and trying to grab and take my bags.
When I asked how much for his taxi he told me 200LE. I told him no thank you and went to go find the proper white and black airport taxi’s. He decided to try and haggle with me, which I am horrible at. I also didn’t want to take the taxi due to the level of aggression/dedication he had while trying to get me to take the taxi, the way he tried to grab my bags. I went to the white and black taxi for 120LE. The only thing was that the driver did not understand how to find the hotel. We found the main street to turn off but he though the hotel was on the street and didn’t understand he had to turn onto a side street. Eventually after asking quite a few people we found the hotel. (It was now roughly 3:30pm)
I checked into the hotel and was able to go up to my room. I passed a large number of bags in the hallway I could only assume belonged to the others in the intrepid group. I was told we had a meeting at 5pm. I took the elevator up to my room 401 to find I was in a nice big suite. It had two rooms and a lounge room. I assumed that my room mate on the trip would take the other room.
I got online to say I made it safe and sound that Egypt used the 2 round prong power outlets and I didn’t bring that type of adapter so I went out to wander around the area and see if I could find a place that would have them for sale. In the end I found a Radio Shack and was able to buy what I needed. Then I found a grocery store and was able to buy water and snacks for the trip. I returned to hotel at about 4:30 and went up to my room. No new arrivals. I used to time to do some writing about my trip to Oman and to check on my social media sites.
Day 1 – Arrival in Cairo – Thirty before thirty