Suez Canal Day 5

St Barbara's Web Diary
Peter & Sue Goldsmith
Tue 29 Apr 2008 07:37
30:35N 32:16E

12.00 29th April

Yesterday was a big day for Egypt. I've already told you about the 8 am
beach party, well when we walked into town it was almost gridlocked and
absolutely heaving. At home it would have prompted front page photos of the
crowds and a Sun headline of 'Phew, what a scorcher'. There really was a
celebration, the park was full of families, vendors, and hawkers selling
balloon animals, hats and streamers, popcorn and kofta. A fun fair had been
set up with great looking old fashioned dodgems and a big wheel. Both looked
like examination pieces set up to test budding health and safety inspectors.
On percentage point for each safety critical fault found and a pass rate of
80%! In the town centre it was just as busy, shops open late into the day,
restaurants buzzing and people cruising around just enjoying the atmosphere.
Later as everyone was starting to go home - around 2300hrs, little children
were asleep on shoulders or tearful from tiredness. People really are the
same the world over.

A few other yachts arrived yesterday so the quay was pretty cramped. We've
been lucky so far because we're moored side-to at the end of the quay
whereas everyone else has been stern or bow-to along the front. Well there
wasn't room for two late arrivals. One was a very large sailing yacht, which
we moved up for and the last was a catamaran, which moored alongside it.
First thing this morning both and a few other yachts including Albert II set
off with their pilots around 0600hrs and are now on the second leg of Suez.
We have decided to stay another day as the wind is less favourable for the
direction we want to take outside of the canal. Albert II is off to Cyprus
which is north east, we want to go north to Turkey, and whilst there isn't
much in it, we are waiting until tomorrow when the wind is likely to have
shifted to the west - fingers crossed.

Sad to say we awoke to some cloud this morning, its mostly shifted now and
the sun is beautiful as ever, but its seems to be an omen of what's to come;
people talk of Turkey being so cold at this time of year. Please think of
us as we bravely soldier on tomorrow.