Sunday, September 1, 1991
Fab was still sick with the runs so she stayed in the room and skipped the tour. Ana and I were late again, but only by five minutes. It was only five people on the tour: a rich woman from Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, a mother and daughter from Austria, and Ana and I. They took us to a dock to take a ferry to West Thebes where everything is located. We met our tour guide and took a mini van to the Valley of the Kings.
It was impressive to see these tombs built 100s of years ago inside the mountains. In this valley, only Kings were buried. We saw the tomb of Ramses VI and III. The VI was huge. It was interesting because of all the hieroglyphics on the walls and ceilings. The hieroglyphics depict scenes from “The Book of the Dead.” His grave was stolen by thieves so the room is full of huge stones. In those times, everyone was mummified. It is a means of preserving bodies for the after life. Even commoners were mummified, but they didn’t get really good “mummy” jobs. Only the Kings, Queens, and rich folk could afford to be preserved for the longest time.
An Englishman named Howard Carter in the early 1900s discovered the most famous tomb, King Tut. His house sits on a hilltop near the valley. This tomb is famous because it was the last one found and it was virtually intact (mummy and all). All the treasures (minus the mummy) are in the Egyptian museum in CAI (i.e. the one where Ana and I took illegal pics with flash). King Tut lies beneath the Ramses XI tomb.
NOTE: King Tut’s tomb was closed. It’s very small because King Tut was only 17 years old when he died. He really didn’t contribute much to Egypt and reigned for only two years.
King Tut’s tomb was not discovered earlier because it was well hidden. Carter was determined to find it. After several failed attempts, he tried one more time and he succeeded. After that, many of the people on the expedition died mysteriously. Many people said it was the curse of King Tut because they had disturbed his peace. Carter also died and people attributed it to that same curse. His house was left untouched after he died and it is going to be turned into a museum.
After the Valley of the Kings, we stopped at a restaurant for some drinks. It was extremely hot and we were dying of thirst and hunger. After our pit stop, we visited the Temple of Hatshepsut (pronounced: Hat Cheap Suit). It’s incredible how it’s just built on the side of a mountain. We stopped there for about 20 minutes. I saw a man sitting on the floor injecting water into the cracks on the columns. It’s done to fill them so they do not fall apart. After this temple, we visited the Valley of the Queens.
The Queens were actually the wives of the Pharaohs. These tombs house remains of the wives and sons of those most powerful Pharaohs. Only one was open and it was actually the tomb of a nine-year-old boy. The rest of the tombs were closed indefinitely for re-construction. The tomb of the boy was awesome because it was colorful and his sacarfogous was intact. It was empty, of course, but incredible. The tomb also contained a mummified aborted fetus of the boy’s mother. The fetus is believed to be the brother of the boy.
After that, we stopped at Colosses of Mernmon where there are these two giant statues which are believed to be guarding a now absent temple. It was incredible because of the size of the statues, but most of it was broken. After we went back to the hotel and we ate with Fab at the restaurant. After, we went back to the room to change to go to the pool, but we fell asleep. We woke up, ordered room service and fell asleep watching Earth Angel, a bad Eric Estrada and Cindy Williams flick.