||[Mar. 6th, 2006|05:14 pm]
Nile for a Smile
Hi! I’ve been meaning to put some pictures on this website for ages, and the recent interest by some of the allied medical press has given me the kick I needed!
The first couple of pictures are of me at the pyramids. The pictures really don’t do justice to their sheer size, but you can see some white uniformed policemen sitting on some rocks at the base of Great Pyramid to give you some idea of their scale.
If you scroll down you can have a read through the entries I made during the route, but for here I will just answer some of the most common questions I have been asked.
Why did you cycle the Nile?
The Children’s Variety Club fund everything from rehab equipment and specialist nurse training, to grants for custom motorised wheelchairs and fun days out for the kids. They are about as ‘rehab’ as it gets, and I thought they were worth supporting.
How many of you went?
How much did you raise?
About £1,500 so far – Go look at my sponsor’s page!
How much of that went to cover the costs of the trip?
None. I covered my own costs for the trip through a part time and summer job in year 1, plus some bike shops donated some kit & me a discount (my thanks to Evan’s Cycles and British Airway’s for that).
What was the best part of the challenge?
The friendliness of the people was overwhelming – many would shout out ‘welcome’ and wave as I went passed or insist on buying you a drink when I stopped off. The pyramids by Cairo and the temples at Luxor were mind blowing. The sense of achievement when I got to Aswan at the bottom of the Nile.
What was the worst part of it?
The first few days, all the Egyptians I met said it was impossible to cycle the Desert highway from Alexandria to Cairo, it did make me a bit concerned they knew something I didn’t! I also picked up a stomach bug half way through, which was less than fun.
What was the weirdest part of it?
Eating pizza in a restaurant with six armed bodyguards waiting outside. Sohag was the centre of a fundamentalist uprising 10 years ago, and although it has been a while since there was any shooting, it’s also been a while since a pasty faced Westerner stopped by. When I arrived at town I had a squad car in front of my bike and a land rover full of troops behind me in the most ridiculous motorcade the world has ever seen. My hotel came with 3 men with machine guns (2 in the lobby, 1 outside) plus 6 who drove me to a restaurant. I wish just I could have thought of something more ‘presidential’ to order than pizza.
How can I sponsor you?
Click on http://www.varietyclub.org.uk/ and press the button ‘make a donation’. E-mail me at Simon_black9366@hotmail.com to let me know and say ‘hi!’
With that done, here are a few snapshots from the ‘Nile for a Smile’ challenge!
There were a lot of cute kids on donkeys, the one in the middle looks about 3 years old.
Some of the buildings were really pretty. They often seemed only two thirds done, as if the owner wanted the option of more floors in the future!
‘Simon of Arabia’! The heat was pretty severe the further south I got, and I was under it for 10 or more hours a day so protection for my ears and neck were wise (plus enough sun cream to come out of the whole thing with a vitamin D deficiency!
A painting of the god Horus from Valley of the Kings, this picture is about 3,000 years old.
Two more recent religions, an Islamic pray tower and a Christian church.
Thanks for reading, if you think the cause was worth it, please sponsor me. If you have any questions feel free to drop me a line!