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Friday, January 23, 2009

Graffiti hunting at the granite quarry.

Our “busman’s holiday” has begun early Friday morning in Aswan. We’ve chosen graffiti hunting for our activity, and we arrive at the granite quarry near the entrance to the Philae temple boat dock. Here are several graffiti visible from the road so we think to start here and then climb up the outcrop and walk south. Everyone is clicking a camera. Joining us on the trip is, of course, Norman, but also Andrew and Keli Alberts, the artist. Will Schenck is also along so we make an even dozen altogether.

View of the graffiti
Norman taking pictures.
Keli taking pictures.

Climbing in the quarry.

After our first encounter with the graffiti we begin to climb and find it produces beautiful vistas as we go.  As we finally reached the top and look down at the river and consider which way to head next, we are busted. Up runs a policeman informing us that we are in a restricted area and must leave. So sadly our excursion is quickly over as we march back down the hill. Never mind, there’s much more to see.

Going higher.
A beautiful view.
The group at the top.
Norman looks at the view.
Heading back down.

Boarding the boat.
Will, Andrew and Keli.
Chris taking pictures.

To make the most of our time we decide to head to Sehel Island and grab a motor boat down opposite the Aswan Museum. Will, Keli, and Andrew are looking at the graffiti cut on the rocks above the river, and Chris is snapping a photograph – not what you’d guess, however. Rather than a simple touristic shot, Chris is photographing the Khnum Temple embankment on Elephantine Island and thinking about the masonry he has been working in squares B/C at Mut! Soon we arrive at Sehel and enter an area walled off by the Antiquity Council. Here spying graffiti is shooting fish in a barrel, so everyone fans out to climb, look, and photograph. Rather high up Jess and Emily look at the extremely well carved image of the King’s Son Khaemwaset from the reign of Amenhotep II, while Norman has found a beautiful view of the river.

On Sehel Island.
Lots of graffiti.
Close view of graffiti.
Emily and Jessica looking at carved image.

Close view of Khaemwaset carving.

Click here to see more images from our trip to Aswan


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