Monday, September 28, 2015

Southern Comfort launches Blood Orange

Being a Southern (US) girl, I grew up on Southern Comfort.  Well, of course, I didn't drink it until I was of legal age (Drink Responsibly) but it's a very familiar bottle in the bar line up of any proper Southern bar or drinks cabinet. Southern Comfort was created in a New Orleans bar in 1874 by bartender M.W. Heron.  It's the perfect blend of neutral spirits with fruits, spices and whiskey flavoring. 

This year Southern Comfort launched their first ever Travel Retail Exclusive, Blood Orange Comfort.   Hey, I travel.  I enjoy Retail and Exclusives!  They offered me a bottle to try out and as they say in the South, "Momma didn't raise no fool."  Yes, please.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

The Great Pyramids of Egypt

There's a particular scene at the very end of Titanic that has always stuck with me.  Silver-haired Rose gets in bed and the camera pans across a series of framed photographs on her bedside table.  

We see photos of young Rose in various scenarios, in a cap and gown, climbing aboard a plane, sitting atop an elephant, surrounded by family members, beaming on a horse on the beach.  All photos meant to quickly convey a life well lived, a long and fulfilling life of adventure and happiness.  

I wonder what photos silver haired Selena will keep on her nightstand.  Graduations, weddings, Jessica, grandbabies and great grandbabies. What travel moments will I want to surround myself with?  Me on a camel at the great pyramids of Egypt will definitely be on that nightstand.  

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

The Egyptian Museum in Cairo, Egypt

When we were planning our trip to Egypt we started off with a week-long resort stay in Hurghada.  During one planning session I looked at Matt and said "But, I can't go to Egypt without seeing the pyramids."  I think it was the tears in my eyes threatening to spill over that convinced him that we needed to explore further than the resort. Of course, he was easily convinced.  So not only did we add on a Private Cairo/Giza Tour but also a Private Luxor Tour which we booked through Egypt Tours Portal

On Tuesday we headed back to the airport in Hurghada and boarded a short Egypt Air flight to Cairo.  The flight was comfortable, the staff was friendly and efficient.  We took off right on time after the safety brief and a Muslim prayer. In Cairo we were greeted by our tour guide and driver.  Our guide was a Egyptologist and the tour included transportation and transfers.  I would highly recommend Egypt Tours Portal.  The two days we spent with them were the best.

Cairo was pretty intense.  It's the capital of Egypt and the largest city in the Middle East.  Like all mega-cities, you're immediately bombarded by the number people, the pollution and overwhelming traffic.  The city is home to over 15 million people with another 10 million in the surrounding area.  Life is happening in Cairo on every square inch.

We were only in Cairo for a short time, so our driver whisked us through the city while our guide gave us a brief overview and we headed straight to the The Egyptian Museum near the Tahrir Square 

Tahrir Square is also known as Martyr Square and was the epicenter of the 2011 Egyptian Revolution.  We tried not to be too bothered by the long line of tanks on hand in case there is any sign of unrest. 

The Egyptian Museum holds the largest collection of ancient Egyptian antiquities in the world.  The do not allow photography inside but the entrance holds many pieces to photograph along with stray cats. 

We quietly asked our guide about the burned out building next door.  He explained that it was once the National Party Headquarters which was set afire during the Revolution. 

We spent several hours exploring the museum.  Tourism is low in Egypt due to terrorist threats and political unrest so the museum is underfunded.  The building is beautiful but could use a face lift. It is poorly lit and there isn't a lot of information about the collections.  There has been recent talk of a revival of the museum and amazing collections. 

We spent most of our time in the museum exploring the incredible Tomb of Tutankhamun Exhibit.  Here is a really interesting ABC News Australia video Inside Tutankhamun's Tomb. We saw the gold mask that was recently damaged and shoddily repaired by a museum worker.  

There is so much to see that there is no way to get it all in with a short visit.  Our tour guide pointed out many important pieces before giving us time to explore on our own. 

We left the museum and set out into the heavy traffic for lunch.  Our guide told us more about Cairo and what an interesting and vibrant city it is.  He encouraged us to return and spend more time.  I found this article about Life in Modern Cairo fascinating and it did make me want to spend more time in this massive city. 

Lunch was on this river boat on the Nile and was very filling including breads, dips, meat and veggies.  Everyone that we encountered in Cairo was extremely friendly and welcoming. 

The city of Cairo is on the East Bank of the river.  Giza and the Pyramids are on the West Bank.  "The east side, where the sun rose, was associated with birth and life, while the west side, where the sun set, was associated with death." 


Can you see the pyramids rising up in the background?  That first glimpse took my breath away and I felt it in my gut. 

Giza would be the next stop on our short tour chock full of bucket list moments.  

Have you spent time in a Mega-City?  Which one?