Giza: Desert City
Imagine a huge sandbox, swirling and rocky, out of which huge, massively organized, contradictory structures arise. Everything is the color of sand, and yet it is still not warm despite the sun has past its zenith. On rented camels we ventured forth, led by a man in a racy “Italia” cardigan and metal frame sunglasses. He looks nothing like the Bedouin I had in my mind’s eye. The camel, however, was certainly an authentic camel, that kneeled when hissed at like a cat. Piled with a colorful carpet saddle, it gave no heed to its slightly overweight, Western passenger. Upon rising, it rocked back and forth as though its shocks and struts were worn dull. After obligatory prank shots with the last remaining wonder of the world (insisted upon by our Italia clad guide), we rumbled into the Menkaure Pyramid, the smallest of the three pyramids of Giza. We crouched and crunched ourselves down the shaft into the Pharaoh’s tomb under the weight of tons and tons of man-made walls. (The sandstone here didn’t feel like uncertainty. If anything, it simply felt like a decision had already been made.) Had unremarkable dinner at the hotel, followed by a lovely, deep, sweet sleep.