I was so happy that the day I was leaving Egypt was finally here, but I was not ready though for the mission to get to Barcelona. We had to catch a stinking bus from Alexandria to Cairo, which took, four hours. We are damn lucky we made it to the bus on time as the taxi to the bus station got stuck in ridiculous traffic and Hubs and I were both stressing that we would miss our bus to Cairo, and hence miss our flight out of Egypt. Nooooooooooooooo don’t let me get stuck in Egypt!! I had a good time in Egypt but I’d had enough of the stinky sweaty dirty place. I needed to get back to Europe!!
Anyway, when our taxi dropped us to the bus station 7 minutes after the bus’s departure time, the bus was pulling out of the dirt carpark that was the bus station. That is, it was pulling out until I stood in front of it! I was desperate and determined to get out of Egypt and desperate times call for desperate measures. There was no way the bus driver was going to run down a western tourist – or was he? I wasn’t convinced I’d be safe, but I wasn’t moving. Luckily, the rude bastard of a driver let us on – and as it turned out he couldn’t leave anyway for some reason and we were stationary for another 15 minutes. This is the only time I’ve been grateful for Egyptian time (i.e. not doing anything on time!) Phew. We were on the bus and on our way to getting out of Egypt.
After a four hour bus ride, we went to the wrong terminal at Cairo airport and ended up trudging to two other terminals with all our stuff until we found the right one. Upon check in with Iberian Airlines, I was told that there was a problem with my reservation. In my head I was thinking: Like shit there is! You had better let me on that plane buddy or else…!! My problem was resolved, without me ever knowing what the problem was, and we were on our way to Barcelona, via Madrid. We flew all night and got no sleep. At Madrid airport we had to wait four long hours before our flight to Barcelona. The shops were all shut and there were no seats without arms to lay down on and sleep. We were Knackered. Really. Someone smart had pushed two rows of seats close together facing each other, providing a narrow space to lay day without being obstructed by the seat arms. So that’s what i did – lay down and tried to sleep. What was I thinking?! It was 100 per cent impossible to sleep – so uncomfortable. I was tired and grumpy, and thirsty but had no water and no where to buy it from because shops were closed and I didn’t have any Euro coins to use the vending machine.
Poor Zorba – I called him on his birthday to wish him a happy birthday and I must’ve sounded terrible. Happy Birthday future husband!
Anyway, by 6.30am, most of the shops were starting to open giving us something to occupy ourselves with. Then our flight from Madrid to Barcelona was delayed by an hour, groan. After a horrendous 17 hours of travel, we made it. A direct flight, had there been one, would have taken five hours. Anyway, we were in Barcelona – hurrah! The first thing I noticed is that everyone was wearing nice clothes, not galabeas (dress things that men in Egypt wear), no women had their heads or faces covered, and everything was new and clean. Aaaaahhhh, back in the first world. It was also lovely to be in cooler weather and not sweat every minute of the day!
I just knew I was going to relish every moment of being back in Spain.