Dmitry Balakirev long postponed the story of his trip to the Egypt closed from Russians. It was in the spring, before the terrorist seized the flight from Cairo. The Kremlin established contacts with Egyptian colleagues and, it seemed, the air communication was about to resume. But since the ray of hope is extinguished, it is time to show what the most popular Russian resort looks like without our tourists.
Hurghada is like an endangered town. Empty streets, malls and cafes, small shopkeepers were on the verge of ruin. For six months dozens of hotels have closed. For example, SeaGull, in which for a season thousands of our compatriots stayed. In general, the tourist market collapsed in Egypt by 65 percent, which dealt a powerful blow to the country’s economy.
Charters to Sharm el-Sheikh and Hurghada no longer fly. But you can get to the lands of the pharaohs and pyramids if you fly through Istanbul.
And so looks “Marina Street” – the most expensive street in the city, where rich Europeans settle. It is located on the first line near the tourist port. Two-room apartments for 100 squares are here an average of half a million dollars. When we came to inspect the promenade, there was not a soul here.
The cafe, named after the revolutionary, is also empty. There are only cats that have long reigned in Egypt. Kis was brought to Hurghada by Europeans. Then the white people began to get bored of pets and they threw them out onto the street. Breeding predators small predators quickly flooded the urban space. Therefore, do not be alarmed if you hear rustling in the garbage can in the evening. So the next four-legged looking for a dinner in scraps:
The port near the mosque of Abdulhasan Elshazi (the main attraction of the resort) lives its own life. Fishermen every day go to sea on rusty vessels. Indigenous Hurghada residents recall that their grandfathers earned their living by fishing. Therefore, when they become completely ill, they will remember the past and will be able to feed themselves:
Egypt is incredibly contrasting. The most expensive street “Marina” is adjacent to the slums, where goats go on the roads, and children play in a heap of rubbish. It is interesting, what happens inside the representatives of the lower classes, when they watch the life of millionaires out of the window?
Local branch of the “Federal Bureau of Investigation” It looks like because of the crisis and it had to be closed:
We look into the slums or the “goat street”, as it is called in the people. Hurghada residents have eternal relaxation. Local Mahmuds in Galabeys rest on a scuffed pedestal. And where to hurry? There are still no tourists!
On the “goat street” is uncomfortable, as in any poor area of the world. Graffiti, rusting shanties, piles of garbage on the asphalt, abandoned construction sites. Although I did not have any feelings of danger for my camera or purse. Firstly, around the town there are full military bases, and on the streets regularly there are checkpoints with submachine gunners, who keep watch over the order.
Secondly, the Arabs are naturally curious. If gangsters pester you on the street, then just shout. On noise the local will fly and will help you to get out of a mess:
Garbage cans do not add aesthetics to the streets. Although poor neighborhoods bribe their colors:
The spouse of the popular Russian blogger Madam Shazli, who lives in Hurghada, took me to his native district. As memories rushed over him. He showed a football field, where a small club played. The team was poor and could miss balls 20 per game, but the local people were still proud of it.
“I also dreamed of becoming a football star, but it did not work out,” he told us. “See this guy?” This is my friend, a Palestinian, it was he who first gave me hashish. Get it is not a problem, if you know from whom to ask. I wish my son did not see what I saw. He was a good boy and played on the football field, and not in the doorways.
Barefooted children try to unearth the treasure in the garbage. Ghetto:
Poverty does not prevent the Egyptians from rolling up posh weddings. Relatives set a hefty tent, and garlands are stretched between the houses. In such days the whole street is walking, not sleeping the whole area:
Before the take-off of the dollar and the terrorist attack on the Russian board in Hurghada, 20,000 Russians lived. Most of them settled in the Russian quarter of El Kawther, which is considered elite. The apartments provide baths, and not shower cabins, straining many of our compatriots. And in the courtyards of houses there are swimming pools. On the roofs of the arbor.
Many Russians created families in Egypt and started a business. Now he was in a difficult situation:
The owner of the station “Play Kite” Alexander Vashlyaev moved to Hurghada from St. Petersburg 13 years ago. Before the crisis, he did not have a rebound from the students, 50 tourists could visit the station on the day. And now at the same time, several people take kiting lessons – and even this is better than nothing.
The salary of instructors has fallen in 5-7 times (from one and a half thousand dollars to 300). Only enough to rent an apartment. People survive at the expense of old savings.
Someone will say, think, let them return to their homeland and settle in Russia. The economy of the country will not be hindered by extra hands. But for a minute in Hurghada their lives, children are arranged in schools, money is invested in business or real estate. How can you quit all this?
Russian girls often complain that gentlemen rarely give compliments to them. Do not notice the new hairstyles, do not say how they go a new dress. In Egypt, this is not a problem. A woman is always at the center of attention, regardless of the constitution, clothing, nationality. In the center of mercantile and vulgar attention. Prepare for the fact that the Arab will loudly and deliciously discuss in your native language all your charms, in comparison with what – “hey, beauty, what a peach!” – will seem to you childish babble.
They knit to all but the girls in the hijab. According to Madame Shazli, this is not a tribute to traditions, but an elementary instinct for self-preservation. If a man forced his wife to wear a veil and a niqab, then he could easily turn out to be some bearded orthodox Muslim. With a bunch of the same bearded friends. If the wife complains to him of the disrespectful behavior of the conditional Mahmud, then this whole bearded clan will come to Mahmoud into the courtyard. And only horns and legs will remain from him.
From Egyptian dishes I tried kushari. Prepare it from pasta, lentils, onions, garlic and chickpeas. Separately with garnish served with a hot tomato sauce.
Strange sausages, like guts, I tried to be afraid:
My conductor Madam Shazli advised not to buy bread in street shops. At first, I did not understand why, until I saw how the traders treated the flat cakes. The picture looked like this: a young guy pulled trays of baking from a pickup truck, clamping the phone with his shoulder. They threw them on the table. From blows one or two cakes fell on the asphalt. The seller picked them up and, not even shaking them off, threw them back on the counter.
CUSTOMER-ORIENTED in Egyptian:
In general, Hurghada is like a place, firmly entangled in the Groundhog. You can walk along the street Sharaton, and then come in a year and everything will be the same. Souvenir shops, cafes, departments in jewelry. And the same barkers will lure you into their departments with the same cunning tricks.
Without Russians, it became much harder for the Egyptians to live. The profit of traders fell by 90 percent, but they do not fall into depression. Although every day of Allah is asked to return quickly.