This is actually Joe writing from Manasi’s login since mine doesn’t work at the moment. Team Egypt touched down just as the sun was setting over the desert. I’m not sure if the lack of other planes at the airport was due to the time of day or the general decline of tourism in the past year. A lot of the flights from Europe tend to arrive and depart late at night or early morning so our ~6pm arrival was unusual.
We were met by Rosalie and Hanan, two of our contacts at CRS Egypt. They rode with us to our hotel in Zamalek, a large island in the Nile that is in the heart of the city. It’s been almost exactly seven years since the last time I was in Egypt and things felt largely the same. I even managed to recognize a couple of places I had visited the last time on the ride in, including the dorm where ND undergrads used to stay for the Cairo semester abroad. I always enjoy seeing the city at night since many of the mosques light their minarets with neon. It makes for a striking visual. I’ll try to get a picture of it in the next couple days.
The drive itself was plenty exciting with “light traffic.” This entails roads jammed with cars three or four across that are constantly merging and slipping by each other while on a surface that was designed to be only two lanes. It was slower going than I remembered and will definitely be a factor in our general logistics here. After a quick dinner down the street from the hotel, the team is heading off to bed or letting everyone at home know we made it. Our first full day of meetings with CRS starts at 9 tomorrow!
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