Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Not so windy after all

Well, the khamsin wind was still blowing on Friday morning. But the farmer women were out in the fields, gathering hay or straw. And the donkey carts were going up and down the road. Business as usual, because the work has to get done or perhaps you don’t eat. This is life for many people in Egypt. The life of farmers everywhere.

I decided to try wrapping a cloth around my head, Bedouin style. The scarves I tried weren’t right, but a voile curtain was. I got it fixed perfectly, with the ends anchored. I had the long end pulled across my face, covering nose and mouth. And then I pulled the long end loose and let it hang free. I thought I looked quite fetching. Though maybe not quite Gertrude Bell (T.E. Lawrence’s contemporary, whose bio. I haven’t read yet.)
Now I was ready for anything! Blow, khamsin, blow!

And then I saw the news videos on the internet, about the tornadoes in Alabama & elsewhere. Suddenly, my little romantic khamsin excitement seemed insignificant and silly.

I’m writing this sitting under my grape arbor, now and then glancing across at friendly Qurna Mountain. The breeze is blowing strong and warm, hot even. It’s a scorcher today in Luxor--106 degrees Fahrenheit/41 Celsius. A heat wave all this week. But on the west bank we have fields and trees and breezes.

Now that I’m living around the corner from one of the great temples of ancient Egypt, in my delightful little/roomy house/apartment, I feel like on of those eccentric foreigners of the old days. Well, eccentric at least! Hopefully not as eccentric as Om Sety, who lived for decades by the temple in Abydos. I might do a post on her. We’ll see.

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