Thursday, April 17, 2008

Temporarily out of Cyprus: last half-day in Egypt

The four days we spent in Egypt felt much longer, as we had seen (and eaten!) so much. Daniel, Tim and I were due to return to Cyprus on Monday afternoon, with a flight at 4.15pm, meaning we had to get to the airport by about 2.15.

Another friend wanted to see us for coffee in the morning, and then another couple invited us to their home for an early lunch, saying they would drive us to the airport.

All of which would have been fine, except that Daniel awoke about 4am with diarrhoea, which kept him awake for a couple of hours, when he started throwing up. Evidently he had caught the so-called 'Cairo Curse' - which seems to afflict random people visiting Eygpt. We have no idea what caused it, since we were very careful only to drink bottled water, and only to eat at good, clean restaurants. I don't think it can have been anything we ate on Sunday, since we were taken out to two very nice places, but some people get the Cairo Curse just from using tap water to brush their teeth - which, of course, we had done. I would have thought the hotel would have acceptable water, but we had one friend - years ago - who got sick every time he came to Egypt.

It was surprising that it struck Daniel, who hasn't had any kind of stomach upset in the two years of travelling around the world on the MV Doulos, but as he said, it was all part of the Egyptian experience.

So Dan stayed in bed for the morning, while Richard, Tim and I were taken to a coffee house called 'Cilantro' on the sea front. Tim and I had rather nice spiced hot apple juice (confusingly called apple cider). Our friend said his driver would take us to our other friends for lunch, which was very nice of him.

I was very glad we weren't doing any sight-seeing as it was extremely hot (over 37C apparently) on Monday. Not quite that hot sitting in the shade mid-morning with a breeze, but hot enough.

So we returned to the hotel and packed. Daniel really wasn't well enough to do anything, but we'd found some medication supposed to help this condition. Unfortunately it didn't. He felt considerably worse by the time we reached our friends' apartment, not helped by the bumpy and very crowded roads on the way.

But the great thing was - one of our friends is a pharmacist, and his wife is a doctor! So they were able to advise us on medication, and she gave Daniel an injection supposed to keep him comfortable for up to six hours.

They had ordered some delicious Egyptian pizza for our lunch, which Daniel would have liked very much if he'd been feeling better. The rest of us enjoyed them very much. It was only a short visit, since we had to get to the airport, and thankfully once we were there Dan coped - mostly sleeping or dozing, but no worse.

The flight was on time and pretty smooth, and we were all very pleased to be home again. I was a bit surprised to find it rather hotter than I expected - when we left Cyprus the previous Thursday, it was distinctly chilly. Our cat-sitter even used the electric heater a couple of times.

But Summer in Cyprus seems to have started in our absence; on Tuesday it was 32C here, which is more than I like at any time, let alone April.


FranMag said...

Hi! It's me FranMag from the Quote Puzzler site. This is totally unrelated to your blog post. I just wanted to congratulate you on topping the leader board yesterday!! I know the one time I did it felt great. I don't think I had 19 stars though. WTG

FranMag said...

Another comment that is related to your post. What an awful way to end a trip!! I never travel without Immodium AD (brand name in America, AD stands for anti-diarrheal). I hope Daniel is recovered.

Sue said...

Thanks for the comments! I don't think I'd even have looked at the star leaderboard thing if you hadn't mentioned it... today is my birthday and we had a busy day so I've only just now popped online to read email and do QP. So I appreciate your mentioning it. Wow.

And yes, thanks very much, Daniel was mostly recovered by the following day and now is fine. I think the medication our friends gave him was something like Immodium. It worked well, anyway. He's been all around the world and never been sick before so it was very strange.

FranMag said...

Happy Birthday! Hope you had a great day. I hope I didn't give you performance anxiety when playing today's puzzles!