The day dawned, we were all very sad as the time had come to leave the boat and end our 3 days of luxury. Our last breakfast was taken on deck and we were whisked off. Already they were taking things down on the boat ready to put them into storage - this will be their last cruise for some time.
We had a taxi back to Aswan - through a moonscape of quarries and past army stuff guarding the dams. We arrived at our hotel - a bit grotty but it was at least empty and we had the pick of the rooms. We hopped a taxi to see Philae island - a temple that used to be half submerged between the old and new dams until it was moved to its new setting. It is the largest and best temple around Aswan and is in a stunning setting on an island to which you have to make a short boat trip We arrived to be greeted by an Australian couple - it was like we were the first Westerners they had seen for days. Initially we had the temple to ourselves, which is amazing as there were literally hundreds of boats to take tourists in high season.
We made our way back to the Nubian museum - unfortunately closed - so we stopped at the 5* hotel for a beer. No Americans this time - just a few Japanese. After a cold beer, we walked through the cemetery to see the unfinished obelisk. The cemetery was interesting - including the guide giving Judi some plant sap for her bites. The unfinished obelisk was large but boring - it was also ridiculously hot by this time so we went back to the hotel to catch up with chores - Internet and washing. The washing was done by a little man at the back of the souq - all for 30p an item including the ironing.
The next day we had an early start as we planned to see 2 temples and wanted to do it before it got too hot. The temples were 1 and 2 hours north of Aswan so we had hired a car and were on the road at 8:15. The journey passed a small town where there was a camel market so we kept passing pickup trucks with camels sitting serenely in the back. We didn't know what their fate was - either working animals or to be sold as meat.
The first temple we visited was Kom Ombo. This was situated right on the Nile and is famous for the crocodiles - some mummified ones but mainly carved into the walls. As usual, we had the place to ourselves. Although the temple was impressive we are getting a bit blasé now - and moved on to the next one. The journey there was through sugar cane fields with lots of tractor/trailers piled high with cane as it is harvest time.
The next temple was Edfu - altogether an impressive site. It is almost as big as Karnak - about 2 football pitches - but it is virtually intact. The buildings are vast - Westminster Abbey would have fitted in about 3 times over. Almost every wall was covered in carvings. We all marvelled at it - just the sheer scale of it and the work done on the carvings. The only negative was that lots of the figures had been disfigured by either the Copts or the Muslims when they arrived in Egypt.
We returned to Aswan to check on the train out. There was a small demonstration going on - all very peaceful. We walked through the souq on the to the hotel - we really stand out now and get descended upon by all the shop owners in the souq.
In the evening we saw another wedding - dancing in the street, fireworks and cars roaring up and down sounding their horns. No wonder we get no sleep.