Our history text this year, Story of the World Volume 1 Ancient Times by Susan Wise Bauer, begins with Ancient Egypt. As the boys excitedly studied about mummies, Egyptian Myths, King Tut the boy king, and of course, the Great Pyramids of Giza, Joe and I anticipated our Eastern Mediterranean Cruise to Egypt in January 2011. The Pyramids at Giza are truly a spectacular sight. Given the recent uprisings in Cairo, I feel very fortunate to have had the opportunity to see the pyramids. The Egyptian landscape makes for an uncomfortable situation for a foreign visitor. There are the romantic images from movies and books that lead your metal travels very far from the actual images a real traveler experiences in Egypt. Egypt is plagued by poverty. Her streets and canals are filled with garbage, her buildings remain unfinished, and her people are desperate for help. After driving through just a small part of the country one can understand the anger, frustration, and fear that drives the revolts in Cairo today. The Egyptian peoples’ suffering is a tangible thing. At the Great Pyramids of Giza, you are bombarded with eight year old barefoot little boys selling you postcards for 1 euro. Everywhere you turn someone is shoving their desperation at you, begging you to buy something from them. But put that aside, they are a fun loving people with sense of humor (just see the pictures they had us pose for). This quality makes me believe they continue to remain a hopeful people.
The Egyptian people's ancient history continues to captivate the world. The lure of the Great Pyramids and there Sphinx bear witness to thousands of years filled with both war and peace. Our children’s children's children will still study them and hopefully have this wonderful opportunity to see them with their own eyes.