After the glorious meeting with police camel number 42, I pretty much figured the day could not get any better; it did.
I had been inside three pyramids, a few temples, and other sites, but still, I craved more adventure in the sand. After all, I flew all the way from LAX, and it was my goal to see every nook and cranny of Egypt. Poor Hassan.
Down the road was another pyramid and some fancy tombs, the important rich people. Wearily, Hassan had Magdi, our driver, take us down there. Poor Hassan had to escort the American tourist running on nothing but caffeine, raw emotion, and chicken no bones.
I was not told where we were going and when we arrived, I thought it was cool we would go into more buildings next to the pile of rubble. It was big but not Step or Red pyramid big. So we entered the complex, and Hassan took me to the pile of rocks, oh goody, rocks.
I saw an entrance down into the rocks with a door. There was a large, friendly man there who approached Hassan. They talked a bit, and Hassan told me to have fun. I was at the Teti pyramid, and I would be ok down there, alone.
I expected it to be all crumbly and broken up inside, crawling over boulders and stuff. Almost like a cave, but that is not what I saw. The interior was in very good condition, the walkway down was very easy, and the walls were still crisp. It was pretty uneventful until I hit the bottom.
Holy, mother of God, this place has carvings all over the walls, super crisp walls full of hieroglyphics. There were rows and rows of the same figures from ceiling to floor. It was almost like Teti had to write out 1000 times “I will not talk in class” on the walls. The detail was amazing as these were quite small.
He had two rooms, his tomb room and a treasure room.
I entered the tomb room alone, and up on the ceiling were starfish carved into the peaked roof. Some of the ceiling blocks looked like they shifted down some, but they did appear to be reinforced by modern means. There was a large granite tomb at the end, but it was empty, just a few grains of sand. The treasure room was empty as usual. I was totally blown away but this place with all the fantastic details and the fact it was still standing.
Talk about your inside not matching your outside.
Teti is worth the visit. I mentioned to Hassan that I saw starfish on the ceiling. To his credit, he only laughed at me on the inside; they were actually stars. The king had stars carved into the ceiling and painted the night sky to look at from his tomb.
After the Teti Pyramid, Hassan decided to see just how much energy I had left. So he led me over to the fancy, rich important guys’ tombs to explore. I did not know at the time that there was a ton to see, and he only took me into a few. On the last day, Amir, our Cairo guide, took us to Sakkara. We went into the medical procedure tomb. More on that later, let’s just say the guide had a good time showing me certain things on the wall. I totally gave Hassan a hard time about that when I got home.
These tombs were amazing, especially in the fact that they were not deep underground. The best part was they were painted and carved with gorgeous artwork. Hassan picked the best ones to see, and I was not disappointed. There were stories of everyday life carved into the walls. I was told stories of what was being shown, and tiny details pointed out. I saw cattle being moved across the river, fish in the river, and the butchering of those cows. There were large figures of the owners on the walls. One room had a “door” carved into it. It was the portal for the dead guy to visit his tomb and afterlife. His people could come to talk to him through that door. I learned where the offerings were placed and how life was for the people at that time. It was all way too interesting.
It was closing time after a few hours, and Laura would arrive soon, so we headed back to the hotel. I think Hassan just wanted a nap.
Magdi, Hassan, and I pulled in, and who had just arrived and was getting out of the van? Laura and Amir. She looked tired and overwhelmed like I did when I arrived. I was so happy to have her with me finally. Hassan and I agreed to tell her how horrible our day was so her feelings would not be hurt. That lasted all of an hour before I spilled the beans and told her how amazing it really was.
Twenty minutes later, we were standing in our room looking out at the great pyramids of Giza. I looked at her and asked, “did you ever think we would be looking at the pyramids when we were in our 20’s”? Her response…” I know, right?”
How did this happen? How did we get here, and can you believe what we were looking at?
This pretty much sums up how I felt at that moment, shock, joy, disbelief, and amazement all experienced with a dear friend. It does not get any better than that, I thought. But, of course, the next day proved me wrong, and so did every day after that.