Egyptsurvival – Part 2

Airports are never fun, it wouldn’t surprise you if you saw one of the destinations on the departure screens listed as Hell, boarding at gate 26.

But you appreciate all an airport has to offer when you rock up at one that doesn’t cater for travellers, Taba in Egypt is one such airport, just a strip in the desert from what appears to be a military area.   It consists of one room and you are herded through it in a similar vein to POW’s in many a war movie as they bark orders at you, and snap their fingers in your face to hurry you along.    I don’t know about you but there is no better way to start a holiday than imagine you are going to Guantanamo.

Whilst in line for what I expected was for my head to be shaved and be deloused before being given my prison clothes, I was stuck behind some painted ladies, painted in the sense that their make-up had been applied with a shotgun.  They were already bright orange, either they had just flown from one holiday to this one or they sleep coffin like under a sunbed at night.   You could smell the botulism coming from them as their tightly stretched faces were immobile as they spoke through pursed lips.

They originated from the county of Essex, much fabled in the UK, home to many alien species you don’t find in other parts of the country.    I delighted in listening to them brag of knowing people from the hideous TV show, The Only Way is Essex.  One foolishly claimed “They show Essex people as stupid, but we ain’t stupid”  a feeble attempt to convince anyone who would listen.   I breathed a sigh of relief when I heard they were not staying at the same resort as me.

Most people from my flight were not on my resort as I saw them trudge onto a coach laden with way too much luggage for a week.  I spotted my name on my private minibus transfer and we sped off down dusty trails for all of 5 minutes before we came to a perimeter fence.  Armed guards kept us waiting in the van for 30 minutes as they smoked and laughed between them.   This was the point when you read about tourists being kidnapped, and I dreaded how I would look in the YouTube hostage video after that exhausting flight.

Eventually we arrived at the hotel, a purpose-built complex of 5 hotels, I stayed at the Intercontinental.  Eventually I found my room in this huge complex after being given no direction from the reception staff.   I noted where the bar was where I would proceed to unburden myself after unburdening myself of my bags.

The next day I checked out the buffet dining room where we would be forced to eat every meal at scheduled times.   It was airy, and by airy it was so airy that it allowed little birds to flit across the dining room throughout your meal, it was a process of elimination to find a seat that hadn’t got bird poop on the back of it.   During dinner I glanced at the dessert counter and saw one little chirpy fellow hopping over the cake selection.  I was relieved I don’t care much for dessert.

The rest of the day was spent by the pool until the over enthusiastic animation team tried leading everyone in some water aerobics.  I ventured back to my room to observe proceedings from the safety of my terrace.

After a couple of days of the same routine I was tragically struck down along with my partner of the most violent vomiting and diarrhea.  It lasted 3 days.

Forced to spend this time in our room, we watched many 80’s movies that were on the TV, the adverts were more entertaining though.  After decades of our washing powder ads bragging to get your whites, whiter than white.  It was with complete contrast that the ads here were boasting they can get your burka’s blacker than black.  They showed by a graph how your burka fades over time, eventually taking on a washed out grey look, which in fairness is likely to result in you being stoned.   So it was with great relief that this new improved product was launched to prevent your untimely death from the embarrassment of a faded burka.

Most holidays I dread returning home, but we craved our house and seeing my cat again.  We boarded the plane and endured another bout with THE MOTHER amongst other familiar faces.   We landed in the early hours at Gatwick Airport expecting to see my name emblazoned across the sign of a pre-booked taxi driver, which was of course in vain as he hadn’t turned up.

So you see survival was apt for this holiday,  at least I learnt never to select a resort again, I should have known really.   The best part of travelling is experiencing different cultures and food, so the idea of being transported to a secure resort surrounding yourself with the same people and food everyday is in complete contrast to that.  You simply can’t go for a stroll outside the resort, I prefer staying in a villa, with my own pool and venturing out to explore, or renting an apartment in a foreign city so I get the slightest feel of what it is like to live there.

Sorry Egypt, but you sucked.

Leave a comment


  1. Wow. That does NOT sound like a fun vacation. Why Egypt? Was there nothing better in the same price range? I hear Syria’s lovely this time of year.

    • 😀 I thought (foolishly) that I didn’t have time to plan my usual trip booking everything seperately and researching restaurants and areas. So thought just book a package, and I was desperate for sunshine after a lousy Winter. That came back and slapped me in the face

  2. Sorry you didn’t enjoy your vacay. You would think in a large resort they would have good clean water & food so you wouldn’t have Montezuma’s revenge (or is it only in Mexico you suffer from Montezuma’s?) Since I am a woman, Egypt would never be on my list of destinations to visit – for goodness sake, they don’t even let women drive there!

  3. Ahhh, to travel and partake of the earthly delights of the foodstuffs of many lands, and then spending three days forcibly ejecting them from every orofice.

  4. Thanks, I’ll stay home under the air conditioning and watch the travel channel doc on this place instead.

  5. That burka line is class pure class Joe – worth getting the trots for!

    • It was a very professionally made ad, it was actually a Dubai channel, and it really felt Westernised, like they aspire to be as commercialised as the rest of us. It actually felt quite sad. And they love anything involving fighting, it was always reality shows about becoming a cage fighter or the actual cage fighting shows, oh and American Wrestling but there was less fighting and more acting out a Shakesperian tragedy in the ring.

  6. Congratulations! Lots of people get sick while exploring new places and trying new foods, or stay healthy but bored while confined to a resort environment, but you’ve managed to combine these experiences into the worst vacation possible.

  7. I vote for Laura. We are supposed to vote? Yes?…call me Brilliant…Laura it is!!!

    • You can and she’d win! I can always rely on Laura to spot the nuances and come up with a brilliant quip

  8. I think I was on your flight!

  9. Good lord, was it the same MOTHER or a different one? it sounds like your trip really did suck mightily, and not in a good way. Next year, how about switching things up a bit with a nice trip to Siberia?

    • The same, charter flights are only once a week so you are with the same people on both flights

      Siberia does sound appealing in that context.

  10. So sorry your trip was so rotten. It says a lot about a trip when you are so happy to be going home!

  11. Well I hope you enjoyed the sun and the pool anyway. And being sick like that how miserable (I’m not much of a traveler. I always want to come home three days early.) But I always think a successful vacation is one where you really appreciate how nice your home is! 😀

  12. I am late to the party here but once I had stopped choking with laughter at this and the previous post I felt compelled to comment – like you (as you know) I am also a seasoned and relatively experienced traveller, like you I also (foolishly and desperately) needed some sunshine a couple of years ago and also booked to go to Egypt. Fuck my old boots, what a grim story from start to finish. Not only did me and the wife get food poisoning, but she also got some kind of manky finger-related ebola the pus of which had to be sent to the tropical diseases unit to be analysed when we returned (I am not making this up). We couldn’t go on our trip to Cairo due to aforesaid illness and didn’t get the money back, we both got bitten to death by mosquitoes (I almost never get bitten, clearly no fucks are given by Egyptian mosquitoes as to my blood tasting of shit), we got CONSTANTLY and I do mean constantly harassed to the point where we both started wearing a ring on our wedding finger and telling men that our husbands were also there, I almost got felt up in a taxi and the cocking airport staff directed us to the wrong terminal so we nearly missed our flight home. On the flight home we not only had a MOTHER but an unholy hybrid of MOTHER and ESSEX. I have never been so glad to get to fucking Luton Parkway in my life. Egypt, you are THE WORST.

    • Good grief! In a way I’m glad it was not just me being particular. Women get terrible treatment there, if it’s not shouting at them for something it was leching over them.

      I’m crossing that entire part of the world off my map, Middle East can do one too. Anywhere with archaic drinking laws and disdain of women and homosexuals can get fucked.

      And the food is awful, it’s usually one of the best bits about holidays, I should have known though.

      Have my US visa interviews in 3 weeks, Fingers crossed


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: