Published: December 22nd 2011December 22nd 2011
Khan al Khalili is a market that has been around since the 14th
century. It’s a maze of shops selling everything from lighting to gold to spices to ashtrays and much, much more. I spent the morning wandering around doing some Christmas shopping. You get an ashtray! You get an ashtray! Everybody gets an ashtray! Okay, I’ll stop. Nobody is getting an ashtray. After several hours of wandering and spending lots of Egyptian pounds I decided to head to the Egyptian Museum to see some of the mummies that I didn’t get to see in Luxor.
I bought my ticket to the museum and checked my camera at the door because they’re crazy strict about not bringing a camera in. Several tour guides offered me their services in the courtyard because there are thousands of artifacts in the museum and most are not labeled, as I found out when I entered. Sadly, I spent all my money at Khan al Khalili and only had enough for my entrance fee to the museum and for the taxi back to my apartment once I was done with the museum so I had to forego a guide. Once inside I thought I would just buy a small guide book that would help me map out the place. Nope, more money than I had with me. Okay, so I just have to wander and look. Fine with me.
I made it to the mummy area and was asked for a ‘special ticket’. I didn’t have a special ticket. Hmmmm. I asked how much a special ticket is and I was told it’s 100 Egyptian pounds. Much more money than I had on me. I found the guy selling the tickets and asked if they took credit cards. No, of course they didn’t take credit cards. Ugh. The main reason I wanted to go to the museum was to see the mummies and I can’t see them. Not happy. After 2 hours of wandering around the museum (which is a very fast pace….most people take 2 days to go through) I decided to leave. If I want to see the mummies I’ll have to go back. I found the helpful guy who showed me the entry on the way in who told me he would be my taxi back to Zamalek when I was done. He was helpful so I thought I would keep my word and use him as my taxi. He took me to another taxi and I was confused because I thought he was my taxi driver. Then suddenly my 10 pound taxi became 15 pounds because he wanted me to give the taxi driver 10 and him 5. I was really not happy about this either but I thought 5 pounds is a little less than a dollar and this man was helpful. Fine, I’ll give him 5 pounds and the taxi driver 10….even though I knew I was overpaying. The taxi driver took me to Zamalek and about a mile from my house told me that to actually go to my house would be 15 pounds for him instead of 10. I was not okay with that. I became crazy lady and started screaming at him saying that I was living in Zamalek so I knew what taxi rates were and I knew it should be 5 so I was already overpaying and I would not pay him 15. He shut up for a while but when he dropped me off he tried again telling me 15 pounds. I gave him 10 pounds and got out of the car.