What a Holiday! (published in The Star paper, Startwo pullout on 9/1/10)






 Cairo Train Station                                                        Train Arriving 

The Night Sleeper Train from Cairo to Aswan

We were told to carry a change of clothing and our toiletries for the night sleeper train which we will be boarding at 8.20 p.m. from Cairo train station to take us to Aswan.  Since this will be the first time I am going to sleep on a train, I was looking for a ride equivalent to the Orient Express or at least the Keretapi Sinaran Express.

According to a CCN news report dated 23/3/02, on 20/2/02 a fire broke out on a train traveling from Cairo to Luxor where more than 360 people were killed or burnt to death. It was the worst accident in the 150 years of train tragedy and if I had known about it earlier, I would have jumped train.

Have you taken a ride that never seemed to reach its destination, ploughing on and on without the slightest inkling where you are heading?  That was the train I was on. The glass planes were covered with thick smog that had not been washed for decades that made looking out impossible.  By the time the train crunched to a halt, 14 hours later, I still could still feel and hear the long, screeching sound of metal scraping against metal, followed by jerking and more jerking and screeching as the driver (plainly couldn’t be  bothered-type) pulled to an abrupt stop and then started to move again. It happened throughout the train ride. Each time the train made its stop, as we peered out into the darkness, thoughts and fear of the train being hijacked flickered through our minds. The final halt was a great relief to my group of 28 holiday travelers, not to mention the hundreds of other tourists from Asia and European countries. We were ill-informed of the stations where the train made its stop en-route to Aswan. In fact, right from Cairo station, no announcement on its delay was forth coming.  Even if it did, it was all conducted in the Egyptian language.

By the time we stepped off the dusty train at Aswan, some were feeling giddy, others nursing a headache due to lack of sleep, and some clutching their un-touched packed supper or the morning’s breakfast.


About moviemania

Mission work in Kuching, Sarawak & Climbed Bako National Park, seen the largest proboscis Climbed the Great Wall of China & serenaded by Ku Nian along Yangtze River Sailed the River Nile Walked in the footsteps of Jesus, crossed River Jordan into Israel, the Holy Lands Mission work in Talugtug, Philippines Mission work in Toowoomba, Queensland Mission work in Kalaymyo, Myanmar
This entry was posted in Travellers' tales. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to What a Holiday! (published in The Star paper, Startwo pullout on 9/1/10)

  1. alice says:

    Aiya! You told me you posted it on Facebook. I checked and checked and wondered how come there is no new picture. Thought something was wrong with facebook. Does the article include your pictures?

  2. moviemania says:

    Sorry Al for the confusion. Thanks for dropping by after a long absence: my fault though. Looks like I might have lost all my regulars haha…..

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s