A traditional component of most village homes is a mastaba, a bench on the front of the home where the family can sit in the cool of the evening or in the morning sun. Many of them are simply painted concrete, but the owners of this home took fragments of tile to create this image of lotus flowers.
Today was the first day of the Eid, the holiday after Ramadan, and we went for a ride in the villages near us. We went quite early, partly because of the heat and partly because of the children. The kids have been up since early and have breakfasted on kahk, bisquits and petit fours....which are essentially shortbread cookies filled with jam, dates, honey, or nuts. Long before noon, the sugar high is building and kids are out buying Eid toys from small shops. Like pretty much every year, the boys' favourite toy seems to have been various types of plastic pistols. Most of them will be broken before next weekend. Some Chinese factory has made a fortune today.
Egypt is a country that still relies on real four legged horsepower for transportation. Harnesses are both important and mortal, but where do you go to buy harness fittings or ornaments? We went to the Sunday souq at Menawet to find things for our donkey harnesses. Most of the pieces are handmade.
Village families don't own cars for the most part and there are no shops out here so salesmen come out and wander about with pickup trucks, donkey and horse carts and motorcycle trucks filled with goods that households might need. This man is the local version of the Fuller Brush man.
I came to Egypt as the wife of an Egyptian/Canadian businessman and the mother of our children in the late 80's. My husband is no longer with us, the children are pursuing careers abroad, but Egypt is still my home, albeit, a rural rather than urban one. You can reach me at msgabbani at gmail.com