Monday, June 29, 2009

We love Egypt because…

… museums and historical monuments feel no need to string those protective rope barriers or block off all the cool things you actually want to see. And, in some cases, touch.

Basically, this means Andrew is in seventh heaven. (An odd expression once you type it.) He can touch ancient things. He can look into things and out of things at will. He can climb old minarets to the top and no one will stop him.

It is quite liberating for me as well, as I do not have to be nervous about him being thrown in a foreign prison. And, I get to touch and climb myself.

Photography has proven a bit challenging. One, I have a pesky lint spot somewhere inside and no matter how many parts I clean I can’t seem to eradicate it. Two, I am having a hard time deciding what to take pictures of. Here is my plan:
1. Pictures of anything Andrew spends extra time looking at. Because he will inevitably turn around and say “Did you get a picture of… (old Islamic thing)?” (That makes me sound uneducated. In reality, I am also taking an Islamic art and architecture class and I have a pretty good idea of what is important.)
2. Things that help me remember feelings I have. Like, wow, there are a billion satellite dishes here.
And, hmmm… those are sheep walking down the street.
It is really hot and we are tired.

3. Old things. This is where I run into trouble. Old things: pyramids, check. Lots of ancient mosques, check. Turkish houses from the 1700s? Cool, but not old. (When in doubt, take pictures anyway.) Things that seem terribly modern here are often from the Middle Ages. “New” renovations to mosques were often completed in the 13th century. It takes a paradigm shift.

4. Juxtaposition. I love irony, contradictions, and general studies of extremes in any form. There are lots in Egypt.

(This is the door of a small mosque that is being restored. The threshold step is taken from ancient Egypt. You can see the name of Ramses II in hieroglyphics if you turn it upside down. It has been reused in a newer, but still terribly old building. Next to modern trash.)

1 comment:

T-Ray said...

That is so awesome! I can't believe you are actually there! I am so jealous. I want to go there some day!