Sunday, October 07, 2007


dark star safari

i was at a busy road junction today waiting for the green light and i must have dozed off for a second or two for i suddenly found that the cars in front had drove off and the car behind furiously blasting the horn away. a very dangerous thing to do i know but i was so dog tired (not an excuse I know). as usual, during traffic crawl or at red lights one of my bad habits is to pick up a book and read a paragraph or two and i must have dozed off. at that time i was reading about the Amun temple ruins in the middle of nowhere in kush , upper sudan. amun is of course an old egyptian god with the ram head as egyptologists among you would know.

and the book i was reading was dark star safari : overland from cairo to cape town , another very good travel book by paul theroux. and another very good read i must add. i was immediately hooked when in the first few pages he described his meeting with naquib mahfouz the great egyptian writer in one of his salons and about all those lonely white ladies taking the nile boat cruises looking for the "nubian bananas"

... and for the first time it gets me interested in egyptology and all those heiroglyphics, obelisks, mummies, pharoahs and their interesting gods and godesses. I've seen so many of these mummies and old egyptian art in the british museum, the louvre and the met over the years but i've never paid much attention to them . and talking about obelisks, to me it's quite ironic that right in the middle of st peter's square in the vetican the centre of christendom (at least a version of it) , there is a tall and majestic obelisk and these people think nothing of the fact that this majestic obelisk was carted away from egypt and in fact a stolen property. i wonder what writings were on that obelisk and won't be too surprised if they were about prayers to some old egyptian gods. another delicious irony. i imagine , much like the tibetan prayer flags, all these heiroglyphic prayers probably radiate away upward to heaven from the obelisk to the sky god horus or isis his mother or Ra the sun god and all these, come right from the middle of the seat of monotheism (of sort).

and it so happened that i also saw in the bargain area of borders the curve a pile of an excellent exhibition catalogue "eternal egypt: masterworks of an ancient art from the british museum" at the curve some months back . and at the spur of the moment as i wont to do, i just veered my car to the left and went straight to borders instead of going to my original destination (home) and bought the book. and who knows, it might start off another craze. i might start collecting books on egyptology. which may not be too unexpected. for a very long time i had a lump of sandstone taken from the great pyramid of giza. i er ...well, stole this when i went to visit cairo and the pyramid a very long time ago . people said you'll be cursed if you take anything from this place but so far i can't say that i've been cursed with anything very much unless if you think blogging doggedly knowing full well that hardly anybody is reading it is a curse.

i do read you greenbottle and i enjoy reading you! maybe i count for nothing, no?
ah rox ! no woman count for nothing in my book... and you're one fine and interesting lady.

i feel flatttered with people like you visiting me here...
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