Day 074 Egypt : Dakhla Oasis - Luxor

Day 074 Egypt

Trip Distance 534 km (332 m) Total Distance 10286 km (6393 m)
Diesel Costs EP1.10 (£0.11!!) The cheapest yet  
       
Stopover
Luxor
Rezeiky Camp N25.71138 E32.64864 EP60 - cleanish loos and showers, laundry facilities, pool and great internet access

We started off first thing in the morning intending to head for the next oasis at El Kharga.  We arrived at just on 2pm and decided that we would have plenty of time to make it directly to Luxor - the pool at Rezeiky was calling us!

We set off again from El Kharga but this time we weren't alone as we had picked up a police escort.  It was the first time we had experienced this but were expecting it as we had read that exactly the same thing had happened to Bob and Jackie from www.sandygoestoafrica.com at almost the same place.  We pootled along with our escort following at a reasonable distance till the next police checkpoint about 50kms outside El Kharga.  Now we got to thinking (as you do to pass the hours sitting in a cab watching the world go by) why the police do this and why there are so many checkpoints through the desert and between 3 chapters of Book 1 of Lord of the Rings and Queen - The Best of Part I, we came up with what we think is a good, reasonable and positive explanation:

a) there are drastic levels of unemployment in Egypt and we think that employing police is like providing jobs for the masses.

b)  if you have ever driven through the desert, you'll know that you don't want to ever breakdown on your own without people knowing where you are.  These police sit in god-forsaken, hot, dry police stops to ensure that we check in/out of the each checkpoint (about every 100kms or so) to let the next ones know we're coming so that if we do ever have a problem and don't make the next checkpoint in time, they know where to look for us.

So our thanks to the Egyptian police.

And in every checkpoint (other than the one at St Katherine's) we have been treated courteously and kindly and haven't had a single request for baksheesh or gifts.  Our experience overall of Egypt has been good, in fact great, and so far we have loved every minute - we wish we could stay.

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#1 brenda on 7.01.2009 at 8:30 AM

Hello from a warm UK, it has been between 25-30 degrees during the day.

Wow... you guys are are looking well and Sully is looks like she is part of Africa.

Does not matter where you get too you seem to be having some interaction with the law, good and bad. Now now.... you are going to have to leave Egypt as you still have a long way to go.

Take care and safe journeys with love from the Leach family and extensions. xxx

#2 Mark Kay on 7.01.2009 at 1:06 PM

Glad to hear you are doing well. Havent got anything that interesting to say except that Ive obviously come to your web site to check out that the trip is going ok, so glad to see it is!

Reading your comments though, what happened in St.Katherine's?

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It was the only time that got got a hit for baksheesh (bribe) - you can read about it on http://www.gapyear4x4.com/route/egypt/day-065-egypt-nuweiba-st-katherine-s-monastery/ BTW thanks for reading the blog - hope you enjoy it. :o)