When I booked my flight from Bangkok to Toronto, a 20 hour stopover in Cairo sounded like a good idea. I imagined myself visiting the pyramids, museum and bazaar. As my departure date neared I contracted Dengue Fever from a mosquito in Thailand and 20 hours in Cairo sounded more like torture. For two days before I departed Bangkok I was back and forth between my bed and the international hospital. I got the OK to fly from the doctor just 8 hours before I was scheduled to leave. There was no way I was staying in Bangkok sick – I wanted to go home!
When we landed in Cairo the airlines set up an amazing hotel room and a day visa for me – for free! After 6 months of eating asian food I was ecstatic to try some middle-eastern food: tagine, couscous, hummus, and lots and lots of breads. I felt well enough to hire a driver and check out the pyramids. Leaving the comfort of the hotel I felt the biggest culture shock since leaving home. I had no idea what to expect from this city and it was so much different than what I was used to.