Thursday, May 11, 2006

Getting Ready to Leave Egypt

Hi everyone. Today is my last day in Egypt.

Kristin is busy packing and soon we are going to go to a special dinner to celebrate the trip. I am a bit sad to be leaving. I met so many nice people and learned so many new things! I wish I could stay longer but I suppose my Mom and Aunt Lynn would like to see me.

While Kristin is busy packing (and she has A LOT to pack), I am busy studying hieroglyphics. I am very interested in learning more about the ancient Egyptian alphabet. Kristin says if I study really hard, I might be able to read the pictures on the temples when I come back to Egypt (and yes...Egypt is another place I want to visit again!).

Kristin bought me this cool ruler that helps me learn the basic hieroglyphics.

Also, my Aunt Lynn sent me a few Web sites to help me learn more about hieroglyphics. You can even see your name spelled in hieroglyphics on one of them! Here are the sites in case you want to learn more. and

Thanks Aunt Lynn for sending me these links!

Kristin says we are leaving the hotel at 2:30AM Friday morning and our flight leaves at 5:30AM (WOW...Kristin must REALLY like early flights because it seems all of her flights are VERY early!). We will stop in Frankfurt, Germany again and get on a new plane and land in Washington, DC around 4:00PM on Friday afternoon. We are spending the night in Washington and I should be home in Iowa on Saturday afternoon.

I know from my last trip to the region that the flights are MUCH longer than they appear on the schedule. I bet I will have some of that "jet lag" stuff when I get back to the USA! So I better get some sleep.

Bye for now...

Back to School

Hi everyone! I hope all is well.

Earlier this week, Kristin took me back to in Egypt! OK, I actually didn't attend class, but I visited two school programs in a district called Beni-Suef.

It took us more than two hours to get to Beni-Suef by bus. It was a VERY bumpy ride (plus Kristin and I were sitting in the back seat of the bus!). I could tell we had left Cairo because suddenly there were no buildings and all I could see was sandy ground for miles and miles. It reminded me of how the desert looked outside of Doha, Qatar on the day I went to see the camels there with Keith and Kristin.

But all of a sudden I could see a large patch of very green land in the middle of the desert. Do you know what that is called? It's an oasis...just like the name of the camel Kristin bought for me in Dubai. It was cool to actually see a real oasis!!

Then, as we got closer to Beni Suef city, the landscape looked very similar to what I see when I look out the windows of my school bus at home in Iowa. In fact, I thought I was in Iowa for a second. It was very green and there were many fields of various crops including sugar cane, wheat, and corn. Yes...they even grow corn here in Egypt! Here is a picture of a corn field Kristin took from the bus.

Kristin told me the area was green because the Nile River is nearby. She told me the farmers here use various ways to get water to the fields to make the crops grow including canals. She called this "irrigation." I think this is similar to the way farmers near Muscatine use big sprinklers to water their crops in the summer time.

We actually visited two schools. Kristin told me the first was in the city of Beni Suef but I fell asleep on the bus just before we got to the first school so Kristin decided to let me take a nap.

But I was wide awake when we visited a second school in a very small village called "Tonsa al Malaq." The village itself is small. The streets are VERY narrow. They were SO narrow that I was afraid the bus wouldn't be able to get down the streets. But we eventually made it.

The school we visited in this village uses a concept called "Ishraq." This is a special program that includes math and spelling classes and sports. This sure sounds like the classes I take at Louisa-Muscatine school! When we arrived, students in an upstairs classroom were sitting at wooden desks and they were taking turns writing Arabic numbers and letters on a chalk board with their teacher.

But I quickly noticed I was the only young boy in the room. Kristin says that's because "Ishraq" is a program for girls. Isharq means "enlightenment" in Arabic. The goal is to help teach young girls in Egypt how to read and do math so they can go to more official schools. I asked Kristin why the girls needed a special program. She says in some countries girls are not allowed to school. I had no idea! There are plenty of girls in my school!! Although the girls in my class at home sometimes drive me crazy, I guess they are lucky that they get to go to school.

While we were visiting the class, my friend Michael asked our translator to ask the teacher if I could have my picture taken in the classroom. I think the teacher was a bit confused about my flatness but the translator told her I was a young boy from a school in America. Here I am with the teacher.

And here I am with one of the students.

After the pictures I think the girls were curious about my school although I couldn't understand the conversation. Kristin and her friends promised to see if someone would take my picture in my classroom in Iowa so Kristin can e-mail the photo so the girls can see how my classroom looks. I sure hope my Mom or Aunt Lynn can take my photo at school before the end of the school year so I can show the class I visited how my teacher and classmates look.

Did you notice that the teacher and all of the girls are wearing headscarves? Kristin says most girls in Egypt wear headscarves to class. I still think this is odd. But, I guess the girls are just being respectful like Kristin was when she visited with the Grand Mufti last week.

After we left the village, we briefly stopped so Kristin and her journalist friends could take a picture of something called a "step pyramid." This pyramid looks very different than the ones I saw in Cairo. This one looks like it has GIANT steps. Very interesting.

That's all for now. Until next time....

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Family Dinner in Imbada

Hi everyone!

This weekend I had a very interesting dinner. All of the members of Kristin's journalist group were invited to eat dinner with families in a Cairo neighborhood called "Imbada." Kristin says this is one of the poorest neighborhoods in the entire city.

I wasn't so sure I wanted to have dinner with a family I didn't know. I would rather eat in the hotel's outdoor garden restaurant. But, Kristin said we had been invited to eat with this family so it was very important that I come with her for dinner.

The family we were eating with speak Arabic, the local language. So we had to bring someone with us who could "translate" any conversation. Our translator's name is Ismail. He works for VideoCairoSat, a local television company that has been helping Kristin's group in Egypt. Ismail is very nice.

Kristin's journalist friends Tina and Michael were also visiting the same family. We had to squeeze into a small taxi to get to the neighborhood. I was expecting to see a house but all of the families in this neighborhood live in tall apartment buildings. So, we had to climb up several flights of stairs (in a VERY dark hallway) to reach the apartment of our family.

The apartment wasn't very big but it was very clean. We had to take our shoes off at the door. I thought this was so we didn't get the floor dirty. Kristin says that is one reason but she also told me that in some countries, people are required to take off their shoes at the door as a sign of respect. So, I made sure to quickly take off my shoes!

The apartment didn't have very much furniture. But, they did have a TV and the children in the family were watching soccer when we arrived. Did you know that in Egypt soccer is called football? I had no idea! Kristin says in most countries around the world, if someone is talking about football they are really talking about soccer. How odd!

Anyway, our family was very nice. The father wore a long gray robe that Kristin says is a traditional kind of outfit. He works for Egypt's Agriculture Ministry and I don't think the mother works. She is expecting a baby next month. They already have four children...a boy (age 14) and three girls (ages 2, 8, and 10). The boy and the youngest girl wore regular clothes just like me (she even had a King Tut shirt on!). The mom and the oldest girls wore brightly colored long dresses.

Dinner itself was very different than dinner at my house. First, the mother insisted that I wash my hands (which I guess is a good thing). Then we were invited to sit on the floor. Guess what? They don't have a dining room table! So, we ate sitting on the floor. I think this is kind of cool!

Soon, the mother brought out a large tray of tube pasta and something called "kafta." Kristin told me it was ground lamb with spices. She also served us the same bread I have seen at nearly every meal during my trip in Egypt. Kristin calls it "flatbread." It is round and flat. The food was very good but I didn't eat much because I had a large lunch.

Our family didn't eat with us. The father told Ismail they had already eaten. Kristin says the family probably wanted us to have a special meal. I guess this makes sense.

I noticed while Kristin and her friends were talking with the father that the mother wasn't in the room. Kristin says in some cultures, women don't eat in the same room with men if there are guests in the house. Wow! I can't imagine having my Mom or Aunt Lynn eating in another room.

I must admit I couldn't understand anything the father was saying but he seemed very excited at times when talking with Kristin and her friends. Kristin later told me he was talking about politics. I decided to try to talk with the children. I also couldn't understand what they were saying but one of the girls showed me her school notebook. It was full of the lines and scribbles Kristin tells me is Arabic writing. I couldn't understand a single word! But I did notice she had THREE stars on one of her pages. She must be REALLY smart!

After dinner, the mother of the family came back to serve us cups of Coke and hot tea. We have had tea after many of our meals here. I think this must also be something that is common here in Egypt. It seems odd to drink hot tea when it is SO hot outside but I drank it anyway!

I know Kristin told me that this family lived in a very poor neighborhood ( it looked like the poor village we visited earlier on this trip). But, the apartment was nice and clean (cleaner than my room!). And, family seemed very happy.

Just before we left, we took some photos. Here are some photos of the family.

And here I am with the children.

Special thanks to Kristin's friend Michael for taking my picture. I like Michael because his name is the same as mine!

Now I am glad that Kristin made me come with her to dinner. It was very interesting to see how a family in Egypt lives. Kristin also told me that American guests do not have dinner in people's houses very often in Imbada so this was an extra special visit. Very cool. I like it when I get to do special things with Kristin and her friends!

Until next time....

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Sandstorm Alert!

Hi everyone! I am back in Cairo. Kristin and her journalist friends are still very busy and I am still learning new things everyday.

Saturday afternoon I saw something I have NEVER seen in my life (not even on TV!). It was something Egyptians call "khamseen." Kristin calls it a "sandstorm." I've heard of thunderstorms, snowstorms, hurricanes, and even tornadoes but I have never heard of a sandstorm. Have you?

Anyway, it had been windy all day and even a few raindrops fell on my head as Kristin and her journalist friends walked to a meeting around 3:00pm. Kristin said the raindrops were unusual because it rarely rains in most of Egypt. I had no idea!

But it wasn't until we left the meeting that Kristin told me she thought something else was happening with the weather. The sky had turned a strange yellow-orange color and it was very cloudy. I thought the sky was an interesting color so I asked Kristin to take a photo of me against the sky. I'm not sure you can see much in this photo but BELIEVE me, it was a cool color!

A few minutes after this photo, Kristin and her friends decided we were seeing a sandstorm. I thought this was interesting so I wanted to keep my head out of Kristin's purse as she and her group walked toward the bus. But Kristin said I would be safer if I was tucked away inside her purse. Now I know why.

Kristin walked about half a block and then stopped very suddenly. She said a wave of sand was headed our way and we needed to get inside FAST. Here's the picture Kristin took just before turning around to RUN back to the building we had just left.

Don't tell Kristin but I peaked out of her bag as soon as she started running. Suddenly a big rush of air hit Kristin and her friends and LOTS of sand was swirling all around us. It was raining sand! There was sand EVERYWHERE. It filled Kristin's shoes and covered her clothes. It was also very hard to breath.

Kristin and her friends made it safely back to the building where they had just been and I could tell there was more and more sand in the air. So we waited until the bus could pick us up in front of the building. When it did arrive, Kristin told me to cover my mouth with a Kleenex so I wouldn't breath in as much sand.

It wasn't until we were on the bus and on our way back to the hotel that I could tell the sand was causing major problems. I couldn't see a thing. Kristin said it looked like a foggy morning outside except the fog was actually sand.

When we got back to the hotel, Kristin took a picture of the sky from her hotel balcony. Here's what I could see from Kristin's balcony on our first day here.

And here's what it looked like during the storm.

WOW! Can you see how strange it looked outside? I couldn't even see the Nile River through all of the sand! I told Kristin I thought it was cool. But, I was actually kind of scared (shh...don't tell Kristin). The storm ended after a few hours but it caused a huge mess. There were lots of traffic accidents and Kristin said several international news outlets had some stories about the storm over the weekend.

After the storm was over, I was curious about why it happened in the first place. Kristin said maybe it was the curse of King Tut. WHAT? Kristin says strange things have happened to people who have worked in King Tut's tomb. Some people believe that the strange things are messages from King Tut that he is not happy they are working in his tomb. Kristin says this belief is sometimes called "The Curse of King Tut." I had my picture taken in King Tut's tomb the day before the sandstorm. I hope he isn't mad at me!!!

Kristin told me not to worry. She doesn't think King Tut is mad about my photo. And she doesn't think the sandstorm was a message from King Tut. Whew!

Instead, Kristin says sandstorms are common this time of year here in Egypt. That's because most of the country is desert. I had no idea! See if you can find a map that shows Egypt's desert.

Well I better get ready for bed. I need to get extra sleep because I never know what exciting things I will see next on this trip.

I hope all is well with you. Until next time....

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Luxor, Luxor, and More Luxor

I everyone. I hope all is well with you.

Kristin wasn't kidding on Thursday night when she said I was going to have to get up early on Friday. We had to be downstairs and ready for the bus at 6:00AM (that's REALLY early!).

I wasn't so sure I wanted to get up so early but Kristin did tell me that if I was good I might get to see King Tut's tomb. So, I decided to get up early. Now I am REALLY glad I did.

First, I had to make sure to wear my hat and put on lots of sunscreen. I thought this was strange because it was still dark outside. But, Kristin told me that I would need the sunscreen once the sun came up so I put it on. She also told me to bring plenty of water because it was going to be VERY hot outside later in the day.

We left the hotel just after 6:00AM and walked to a boat dock for a ride on something called a "ferry boat." Kristin says a "ferry boat" is one that moves people from one side of the river to the other side. I had no idea! On Friday we crossed the Nile River. Here you can see me on the ferry boat with Kristin.

Kristin told me that the two sides of the river are very important in Egyptian history. Luxor was once called "Thebes" and the people who lived here thought the sun was VERY important. Did you know that the sun rises each day in the eastern sky and sets each day in the western sky? I had no idea! But this was important when the area around Luxor was first built thousands of years ago. Most the the homes, buildings, and temples were built on the east side of the river because that's the side the sun rises on. Here you can see the sun rising on the east side of the river (or East Bank).

The tombs for ancient Kings and Queens (like King Tut) were built on the west side of the river. Kristin says the rising sun was viewed by the ancient Egyptians as a celebration of life and the setting sun was viewed as a sign of death.

It sure doesn't look gloomy over there does it? There were hot air balloons in the sky over the hills across the river. So, I'm not sure I really understand this "East - West" thing but Kristin did point out that our hotel (as is most of Luxor) was on the east side of the river. Very strange!

Once we reached the "west" side (or West Bank) of the river, we walked to a bus that was going to take us on a tour. Along the way I walked right past some camels. I have decided I really like camels. Here you can see me sitting in the bus watching the camels.

Our first stop of the day was a place called the Colossi of Memnon. These are two TALL statues. Our guide for the day, Mr. Wazery, works for Mr. Hawass and knows all about the temples and tombs in Luxor. He told us that these giant statues and the surrounding area were damaged in a big earthquake over 2000 years ago. WOW! You can see the large cracks in the statue Kristin and I are standing in front of.

It's hard to see me in this photo, isn't it? Kristin is holding me but we look very small next to the statue.

Our next stop of the day was a place called "The Valley of the Kings." This is where tombs of many ancient Egyptian Kings have been found hidden under ground. Guess what? Kristin says this is where King Tut's tomb is located!

I thought the tombs here would look like the pyramids I saw in Cairo. But I didn't see any pyramids. Instead I was surrounded by hills. I wasn't so sure this was where King Tut's tomb was located because it just looked like a bunch of rocks to me. But as we got closer to the main gate, I could see several arrows pointing toward large openings in the side of the hill.

Mr. Wazery says a total of 63 separate tombs have been found in this area. The most recent discovery was only a few months ago and Mr. Wazery told us that workers are still digging out the area of the new discovery. Here you can see the place where workers are digging at the new discovery site.

I wasn't as excited as Mr. Wazery was about the new discovery. All I cared about was tomb number 62. Can you guess which one that is? If you haven't already figured it out, here's a hint!

I was SO excited to finally be standing at the door of the tomb. Then Mr. Wazery surprised me by taking the entire group INSIDE the tomb! Can you believe it? It was SO cool. We had to walk down a very narrow and steep passage way. Soon we were underground in a small room (or chamber as Mr. Wazery called it). This is where King Tut is located. The room is dark and the ceiling is low but there are just enough lights that you can see colorful paintings on the walls surrounding King Tut. Here you can see some of the paintings on the wall (note...Kristin could not use her flash inside the tomb so the pictures may look a bit dark).

King Tut himself was in one of those mummy shaped coffins I saw in the Cairo Museum. And that box was located in a large rectangular box Mr Wazery called a "sarcophagus." Inside that was King Tut's coffin (and inside that is his mummy!). Here you can see me with King Tut's sarcophagus and coffin behind me!

How AWESOME is that photo?!

While we were inside I noticed that Kristin's group was the only group in the tomb. Kristin later told me that Mr. Hawass gave Kristin's group very special permission. The tomb was closed to other people while our group was inside. It turns out Mr. Hawass allowed this so our group could take photos. Kristin says cameras are usually NOT allowed inside King Tut's tomb.

WOW! That means my photo in the tomb is really special! Kristin says I should thank Mr. Hawass for giving her group special permission. THANKS MR HAWASS!!!

Well I had seen everything I wanted to see but Kristin said we were going to visit even more interesting sites. I'm not sure anything could be better than seeing King Tut's tomb but I was still interested to see what Mr. Wazery was going to show us next.

So we got on the bus and and drove a few minutes to a place called "The Temple of Hatshepsut." It is a really large temple that was carved out of the side of a hill.

I was too busy looking at the temple when Mr. Wazery explained why the temple was built. All I know is that it is really, really neat. I guess Kristin was right, there are other cool things in Luxor besides King Tut's tomb (but don't tell her I said that!). Here you can see part of the temple behind me and Kristin.

I'm not sure if you noticed but the temple has three different levels. Kristin and her group wanted to go all the way to the top. So we had to walk up ALL of the stairs you can see in the photo. Whew! It was hard to walk up all of those stairs. Now I know why Kristin said I needed a hat and a bottle of water. I was hot, tired and thirsty after walking up the stairs! But it was worth it. Very large statues are located at the top of the stairs. Man...the ancient Egyptians sure liked big statues, didn't they?

Kristin took a few more photos and then walked all the way DOWN the stairs and back to the bus. I think Kristin knew I was tired because she put me in her purse so I didn't have to walk down the stairs.

I am SO glad our bus had air conditioning. The cold air felt very good. Kristin later told me it was more than 100-degrees outside the day we visited Luxor. WOW...that is SUPER HOT!

After we left the Temple of Hatshepsut, our bus drove us back to the place where we got off the ferry boat early in the morning. Our next stop was on the OTHER side of the Nile we had to take another ferry boat ride so we could get on a bus waiting for Kristin's group on the other side.

The next stop was a place known today as "Karnak Temple." It is another HUGE temple complex near our hotel.

Wow...I didn't think I could see so many cool things in one day! Karnak is even LARGER than the Temple of Hatsheput. There are more than 154 columns in one section of the temple. And, can you believe part of the temple had a roof in ancient times?! It must have taken a very long time to build all of these great monuments.

While walking around with Kristin and her group, I noticed two of the many columns. They have a pointed top. I think they look very similar to the Washington Monument I saw in Washington, DC. Kristin agreed they look similar to the Washington Monument but Mr. Wazery told us these columns are known as "obelisks."

Throughout the day I noticed a number of drawings and symbols have been painted and/or carved on the walls of the tombs and temples. Kristin says these symbols are called "hieroglyphics." Mr. Wazery told us hieroglyphic images are like our modern day alphabet. Each symbol represents a letter or word. When put together, the symbols told a story. I think this is similar to the way pictures and drawings in my books at home tell me about a story even when there are no words on the paper.

Here is an example of some of the hieroglyphics at Karnak (although I don't know what it says).

Mr. Wazery also said some of the symbols are actually ancient Egyptian numbers. Here is an example from Karnak.

I think math is pretty tough already....I can't imagine having to try and figure out these numbers since I don't know what they really are!

By the time we saw the "numbers" on the wall, I was getting very tired. It was VERY hot in the sun. Kristin and I kept applying sunscreen so we wouldn't get sunburn and Kristin made sure we had plenty of water. I don't know how workers could have built these giant temples in this heat!

Here I am with Kristin standing outside the entrance to Karnak.

As we walked out of Karnak, I thought the little shops nearby looked familiar. Kristin agreed and then told me she is pretty sure that a photo of the little shops near Karnak was part of the collection of photos I saw with her and Amy in New York and Detroit. Kristin wanted me to post the photo so Amy could see it. Here it is.

We returned to the hotel after visiting Karnak to get a cold drink and rest for a bit. Later in the afternoon (when it was slightly cooler), Kristin and many of her journalist friends went on another boat ride. But this wasn't like the ferry rides I took earlier in the day. Instead, the boat we were riding in was called a "felucca." It looks like a sail boat. Here is one sitting along the river bank (without it's sail up).

A very nice man used a pole to help push us up one side of the river and when we turned around the wind pushed the boat back down the river.

This boat ride was much longer and slower than the ferry ride. But I REALLY liked it because I could almost TOUCH the Nile River from my seat. I could also see young men fishing in the river with nets very close to our boat.

Here you can see me and Kristin on the felucca boat. See how close I am to the water?!! Don't worry...Kristin held me on tight so I wouldn't blow away.

After the felucca ride, Kristin had dinner with some of her friends and then we boarded the bus (with ALL of our luggage) and headed to the Luxor Museum. This museum is much smaller and newer than the Cairo Museum. It reminds me of the Stanley Gallery at the Muscatine Art Center.

There are many neat things from the area temples and tombs in the Luxor Museum including a few mummies. But, I must admit that I feel asleep half way through the tour.

Whew! I was REALLY tired from our adventures in Luxor during the day!

I didn't wake up until our plane landed back in Cairo (which was VERY late Friday night).

I don't care if I don't get to see anything else while I am in Egypt. I have already learned SO much. Until next time......

Cairo Museum

Hi everyone! I have been SO busy seeing and learning new things here in Egypt that I haven't had time to send you an update.

On Thursday (May 4), Kristin and her journalist friend Tina took me to the Cairo Museum. Tina is from Dallas and she is very nice.

We took a taxi from the hotel to the museum. It was a very small car and we had to share the car with another man from the hotel because he was going somewhere near the museum. I thought this was very strange but Kristin says she has been to many places in the world where complete strangers share cabs to help save money.

It didn't take us long to get to the museum despite the traffic. The building is HUGE and it includes a big front yard filled with stone statues. Kristin calls this a "sculpture garden." Here you can see the entrance to the museum.

It is OK to take photos in the "sculpture garden" but it is NOT OK to even bring a camera into the museum. Many people give their cameras to a person at the front gate. Kristin put hers in her purse.

I had to go through another x-ray machine before we Kristin could enter the inside of the museum. I think the guards were looking for cameras. I kept hoping they wouldn't find Kristin's OR take me out of her purse (because Kristin didn't buy a separate ticket for me!). I should not have worried. Everything was fine and we were allowed in.

The museum itself is SO large that I cannot even begin to tell you in words what it looked like. It isn't like the Metropolitan Museum in New York or the Muscatine Art Center. It looks much older and looks very dirty and dusty in places. Kristin later told me the museum is over 100 years old. I had no idea!

There are SO many rooms filled with statues and items behind glass cases that I was worried we would get lost. Kristin told me we didn't have much time to spend at the museum and she told me we would not get to see everything. But, Kristin was really smart! She brought along her guide book. It turns out her book has a map of the museum in it. And, it tells you which parts of the museums are the best.

So, we headed to a place called "The Royal Mummy Room" on the second floor. This is the place where they tell people how Egyptians thousands of years ago made mummies. This was very interesting. If I understood the pictures on the walls leading up to the main room, workers would put salt and oils and other special items on the body. I asked Kristin why. She says the salt and oils helped to protect or "preserve" the body. Then workers would wrap the body with many, many layers of cloth. If someone was really important, they would also place a special mask over the head of the mummy. I had no idea!

Next we entered a room that had several clear boxes with different mummies inside. Some were wrapped entirely and others did not. I could see the head, hands and feet on some of the mummies that were not completely wrapped. I thought it was really cool but I bet it would scare some of the girls in my class! I could tell some people in the room thought the mummies were scary.

I thought the mummies were some that were used in movies I have seen on TV. But, Kristin told me of the mummies in this room were Kings of Egypt thousands of years ago (Kings are men who ran the country. I think this is similar to a President). So this means the mummies I saw used to be REAL PEOPLE! Wow....that is REALLY cool!

Next we headed down a very long hall that was filled with display cases that included everything from small jars to large wooden chairs painted and decorated with gold. We briefly stopped so Kristin and her friend Tina could look at some old jewelry. I think Kristin knew I thought the jewelry was boring but she told me to be patient because the next stop on our visit would be a very special room. So, I decided to be patient and let them see the jewelry.

Kristin kept her promise. The next room we stopped at was the exhibit room for someone called "King Tutankhamun." I didn't recognize the name but Kristin said he is also called "King Tut" since his name is hard to pronounce. King Tut? I know that name! I've seen shows about someone called King Tut on TV so I asked Kristin if it was the same person. She said yes. How cool is that!?

This room includes items found in his tomb which is in a place called the Valley of the Kings many miles away from Cairo. All of the items were pretty neat but my favorite was the gold mask in a glass case in the center of the room. Kristin says this gold mask is very famous. It is the mask that was on the head of King Tut's mummy. It is really bright and shiny. But it is also small. Kristin says that's because King Tut died before he was 20 years old. I had no idea someone so young could run an entire country!

I also liked the two large boxes decorated in gold and other colors at one end of the room. They look like large coffins that are in the shape of a mummy. One box was smaller that the other and Kristin says that's because the smaller one was placed inside the larger one. Kristin says there were actually two smaller boxes placed inside the largest one at the museum. The third, and smallest, is where King Tut's mummy is located. This third box is NOT at the museum. Kristin says the box and King Tut's mummy are still at his tomb. I'm not sure I will get to see his tomb but if not I am going to come back to Egypt someday just to see it!

We left the museum after seeing the King Tut area because we had to get back to the hotel to catch the bus. But, Kristin did buy me some postcards of the King Tut mask and boxes so I could remember them (since she could not take pictures). Her friend Tina also took a few photos of us outside before we left. Thanks Tina!

After we left the museum we had to cross a VERY busy street to catch a cab back to the hotel. Kristin tucked me into her purse so I wouldn't get hit by a car. But the street was SO busy and full of honking cars that I was worried that Kristin and Tina would become flat like me! Somehow Kristin was able to get us safely across the street. Whew! It would be bad if Kristin became Flat Kristin because then she couldn't take any more pictures of me.

When we got back to the hotel, Kristin told me to quickly pack a small bag because we were going to the airport. It turns out we were taking a plane trip to a town called Luxor. See if you can find it on the map. Kristin says King Tut's tomb is located near Luxor and she told me that if I was really good she might take me to see King Tut's tomb.

So I packed really fast and didn't make a sound as the bus drove us through heavy traffic to reach the airport!

The plane ride took about an hour and then another bus took us to a hotel called the "New Winter Palace." It is located along the Nile River. Did you know the Nile River runs all the way through Egypt? I had no idea!

I was very tired so Kristin let me sleep while she went to eat. She told me I would have to get up very early in the morning so I needed to rest. I was so tired that I didn't even ask Kristin to take my photo.

More about Luxor tomorrow. Until next time....