In short we plan our next trip. I could not ask for a better lifestyle. I have an incredible wife. She is fearless on the road, except maybe crossing a busy street full of tuk tuks
That’s cool, we are never in such a hurry that safety should sacrificed.
Mary Ann is our travel agent. She will spend hours in the evening searching for hotels, flights, and things to do. She corresponds with tour agencies back and forth, back and forth until she is happy with the agenda and the cost. Sometimes out of the blue she will change the entire country we are going to visit. My input is slightly limited. For instance when we decided on Nepal, all I insisted on was seeing Everest.
Our next trip, over the Christmas holidays, is to Cairo. I have been thumbing through guidebooks, some as old as the pyramids themselves. We have the latest Lonely Planet, but after my experience with it in Thailand, I do not really trust it anymore. Lonely Planet used to have competition. Moon travel guides were excellent, but I Think they went the way of the dodo bird.
We rely on trip Advisor maybe too much. Go to any hotel on TA and you will find people who say it sucks and people singing its praises, same hotel the same month. Same thing with tour vendors “Oh he was wonderful” to “the worst ever”. I go to Tripatini, com. This site collects travel blogs, mine included, and tend to be more in depth and honest.
This time after comparing air fares hotels and tour prices, Mary Ann looked at a package deal from Air Arabia. It was cheaper AND we get picked up at the airport. Mary loves to find the “little guy” holding her name on a card. Our flight gets into Alexandria at 3:00 a.m. and apparently the taxi touts are horrible. I look forward to what the sign will say. Her name is Nash. We have been beckoned with cards that say Ash, Mash, Dash, hardly ever Nash.
Whatever source we use for Cairo, the word is Cuidado. The touts are crooks, the guides are crooks, and even the crooks can’t be trusted. These guys are pros. The pyramids are the longest running tourist trap in the world. “hey you Roman Soldier. You want to shoot off the nose of the sphinx?” “Psst French soldier, pretend the sphinx is Naploean and shoot off his nose. Three shots for a drachma.”
At least it will not be hot.