|Co-ords||N 24 05 55.1
E 32 53 56.4
We arrived at the campsite at about 8am and set off to the high dam about 20km out of town. When we got there we were told by the police to wait outside the harbour which we did until about 12. We asked 3 or 4 times to be let in or to be able to talk to someone but they would not let us. Anyway eventually after making lots of pleading noises and signs we were let in. Only to be moaned at for being so late. Go figure!
Anyway, we had to get a blue form for our car, the Swiss already had one which took an hour and cost us 1.70Epounds (I had no change so actually it cost 2Epounds) and we also had to buy tickets for ourselves, these were 80.50Epounds each. The carnet guy was very concerned that we had paid 1.70 for our blue form while the Swiss had paid 5800 for theirs! He must have thought that we had got a good deal. Anyway, we handed back our plates and had to pay 22Epounds, unlike Libya where we got 50Dinars back. The poor Swiss guys had lost one numberplate. This took over 3 hours to sort out with Felix having to go back to Aswan to talk to the police there. All in all very stressful for him. We thought he would have to pay a fine or get a new one made but he paid 2Epounds for the paperwork and thatís it.
We finally got on the boat at 4:30pm. Do not think it is a luxury liner. We are on a flat bed barge tied next to a cargo boat Ė a small one about 25m long. There are metal walls welded along the front and sides of the barge. Eight cars would be a very tight fit here. There is a toilet, surprisingly cleaner than some of the campsites we have seen. We put an awning between one of the walls and the Swiss car for shade and got out our chairs and tables.
The boat does about 12km/hr, the captain says it will take 3 days and 3 nights to get to Wadi Halfa. This is a shock because we were told 22 hours and only have enough water for 2 days. Oh well, we can boil as much as we need.
The boat does not sail at night, we tied up on an island at about 7pm
to sleep. It is a very small island about 100m across. We had a great soup
for supper which Alfons made (tomorrow itís our turn) and turned in to
sleep on the deck under the stars.
26th May 99
|Odo||47 951 km|
|Co-ords||N 23 40 40.9
E 32 52 36.3
Odo change justs shows the short distance from Aswan town to High Dam
Quite a nice nightís sleep. The moon is nearly full so it started off very bright. The moon set though and the stars were great. It was nice and cool too so we could sleep under just a sheet. Today was our first full day on the boat and a damn hot one it was too, Well over 45deg with patches of humidity which made it worse. I smell real bad now.
I did a car service early this morning. Changed the oil, replaced air, oil and fuel filter and checked everything else. Letís hope itís OK. That took a few hours until about 10am. I was so filthy afterwards that I rigged up the shower. Nice warm shower over the edge of the boat Ė great.
The rest of the day was spent sweating and sitting around. We played a few hands of cards but it was really too hot to do much else.
I had a chat with the captain who says we will only be able to disembark on Saturday. We expect, by my GPS calculations to arrive outside the harbour on Thursday evening but as Friday is a day off (a Sunday) we will not be allowed in. Hell thatís long. He is expecting 2 other cars on the return journey. Hopefully we will meet them and get some info about the roads and travel.
Anyway, off to have a sweat. Bye.
27th &28th May 99
|Co-ords||N 22 40 18.9 on the 27th
E 32 16 39.6
N 21 49 08.4 on the 28th
Passed by some huge monuments today. Abu Simbel, another Ramses II temple was actually moved 200m up to escape the rising waters of Lake Nasser.
Passed through the last Egyptian checkpoint. You have to dock on the side and the policemen look through the boat to see if there are no extra people.
That night we slept 5km from Wadi Halfa Ė you could see the lights.
We rigged up a method of sleeping in the car. It is quite comfortable too. It means we have to leave 2 boxes outside but it is not too bad.
On Friday we stopped 1km from Wadi Halfa. As it is a Sunday (really Friday) the border was closed but we spent most of the day hoping it would not be true. It was the most boring of days. There are 3 boats tied up on this little island. One of them is a UNICEF boat off to treat cholera patients further south. The water is a real pain. We finished our bought water ( we thought we would be 1 day on the boat not 5) and are now boiling and sterilising. We tried Miltons but itís awful, now using tablets we bought.
Felix is not doing too well. I hope it is not something we cooked for him. We are all OK now just a bit nervous. Cannot wait to get off this boat but also dreading the customs and formalities. Makes me very nervous.
Anyway, Ins Allah (if God wills) Saturday we land in Sudan. From here
Wadi Halfa looks like a god-forsaken place with the desert dust taking
over, even making the sun dark. I am really tired of the dust now, but
we still have the Nubian Desert to cross so I will have to put up with
more. Weíre still not sure of our route to Khartoum. I suppose we will
be told which one we can take. The roads are apparently very bad. Letís
hope this Land Rover is all itís made out to be. We also have to support
the Swiss in their Kombi so hopefully it'í OK.