Saturday, June 11, 2005
Ahmed, our ‘captain’ lounged in various poses (always picturesque) and barely moved as he took the boat down river towards Cairo, tacking into the wind, then flipped it back to run downwind (with zero sail until Bob suggested a bit of speed might be nice). The tacking was particularly interesting as he would run us fast towards the reed beds at the edge of the river until we were looking at each other and certain that this time we were going straight in. With this much speed up, how could a tub this wide and heavy possibly turn in time? But – he always did. We dodged islands as we went, watched fishermen pulling in a catch, or empty nets, watched women washing dishes in the Nile, and me catching ferries. We passed other faluccas and compared them unfavorably to our own.