Almost in Cairo

With just over one week scheduled for my trip, I’m in El Minya. Since I last wrote on the blog, I’ve seen most of Luxor, gotten sick again and recovered, and traveled to Dendara, Abydos, Tuna El-Gebel, Beni Hassan, and Hermopolis. This evening I had a wonderful time talking with people sitting in the square in the middle of town. I’ve got a train ticket for Cairo for tomorrow afternoon. Although the trip is wonderful, exciting, and productive, I’m very much looking forward to reaching home and seeing all my peeps soon!

Luxor Time

I made it to Luxor after a wonderfully relaxing two-day cruise from Aswan. We stopped along the way to see the temples at Kom Ombo and Edfu. In Aswan, I saw Philae, Elephantine, and other great sites. Luxor is jam-packed with sites, so I’ll be very busy here for at least a few days.

I met a really nice guy named Ahmed who came along on the cruise. Even though we registered as “friends” with the Aswan tourist police, we had to pay for two cabins on the ship because foreigners and Egyptians aren’t allowed to share the same accommodations in hotels, etc.

Radio Silence

I apologize for the “radio silence? since Khartoum, but I haven’t seen an Internet cafe since I left there headed north along the Nile for Egypt. I’m hale and hearty, except for a small cough probably due to all the dust in Sudan. All is well with my adventures. Since Khartoum, I took a bus past Shendi to explore the old Meroë pyramid cemeteries and ancient city by camel! near Barijawaya. On the next bus, I accepted an invitation from a fellow passenger to visit his home village near where Sudan’s President Bashir’s home is located. Escaping there from a near Islamic conversion experience, my friend drove me to a half-dozen hotels in Atbara – all of them full that evening. So, he put me up with his uncle in nearby Ed Damer and we visited more of his family the next day. The bus from Atbara went on a ferry across the Nile and through irrigated fields and the Bayuda Desert. I arrived in Merowe (not the same as Meroë) and explored the Nuri cemetery pyramids, including that of the great Kushite Pharaoh Taharqa and his great-grandson Aspelta. The next day, I crossed the Nile again by ferry to Karima where I stayed at a beautiful and expensive Nubian Guest House. Walking from the hotel that evening, I visited the Temple of Amun and the Temple of Mut at Jebel Barkal, the sacred mountain, which I climbed to see the scenery and the sunset. Near Jebel Barkal at El Kurru, the tombs of Tanwetamun and his mother Qalhata were very impressive and, although not much remains of Piankhy’s tomb, I enjoyed being there among the 25th dynasty characters for my novel. Next came a crazy ride on the back of a bokasi truck during haboob-like dusty desert winds of at least 60 mph. Near Dongola on the banks of the Nile, I saw the ancient city of Kawa. A donkey cart ride brought me to the large mud Deffufa structure and its surrounding ancient village at Kerma. With a stop at the village of Wawa for a walk over to the Nile and a passenger ferry to the temple at Soleb, I spent the night for free in a traditional Nubian home, then by bokasi the next morning to Abri and right onto a bus to Wadi Halfa in time to buy a ticket for the ferry to Aswan, Egypt, which leaves only once a week on Wednesdays. After a 16-hour ferry ride past Abu Simbel, I’m in Aswan, Egypt, with what appears to be a hi-bandwidth Internet location. 🙂

In other good news, I finished the first full draft of the first part of my novel, although I have to fill in a couple of items after further research and writing. I hope you are all well. I’d love to read news from you by email. If it takes me some time to reply, don’t worry – I’m catching up with thousands of emails from when I had no Internet access.

Mystery Solved, Shifting Loyalties, and Queer Freedom

From 304 Winfield Street, San Francisco, CA:

Yesterday, the mystery of what happened to Guille was solved. I noticed him online and chatted him up. He was cordial and even friendly and loving, yet he was on there to call his sister for her birthday. The day before he had sent me an email explaining that he had received the funds for his mother’s medical treatment, that the treatment was going well, and that he had been busy traveling around to take care of her. In other words, he was very busy, so didn’t have time to answer my emails or phone calls during that week. Then, while we chatted online, when I realized he was preoccupied with his sister’s birthday, I offered to wait and chat with him whne he finished with her. He seemed glad about that and said, “Dale,” in Spanish, which means, “Let’s do it.” So, I waited and waited for him, then I noticed that he signed off chat, then briefly back on, then off again, without chatting with me. I can’t help but feel disappointed. I’m feeling like the best move now would be to let him contact me, rather than throwing so much of my energy into what may be a lost cause.

No, that is too harsh. I want to let him contact me so that there is a balance in desire to connect within the relationship.

Interestingly, Paul T., who I met in Rio on my last trip and who now lives in Cordoba, Argentina, started chatting me up yesterday. This after I had decided not to seek him out any fruther since he didn’t want to meet with me while I was in Argentina. I told him that I didn’t feel like he was really a friend because chatting online once every several months didn’t make a friendship for me. I asked him if his boyfriend had broken up with him, and of course that was the case, probably because he gave his boyfriend the same on-and-off again attentions he has given me. He thinks a deep connection with me isn’t possible because of the distance, or so he says to me, even though he is now coming to the States on a regular basis. We left it that he will contact me on his next trip to the States and we will meet in person to see how things work out between us. Basically, I feel like it’s up to him at this point.

Queer Freedom Day Stickers for June 2006 - Pink Party, Pride, and Mikes on Bikes

Meanwhile, on the eve of Queer Freedom Day in San Francisco, I met up with Robin Hood, who I had met previously at the Vancouver Green Body radical faerie gathering. He is a faerie who lives on an island on the Canadian coast. He and I set up a ritual (or scene) where I met him at the dinner that Kirk R. and his partner Ed had set up for Canadians coming to Witch Camp in Mendocino redwood territory. The scene involved a whirlwind tour of San Francisco’s queer underbelly, with him blindfolded and on collar and lead. We had a great time at various venues, such as navigating through 20,000+ people at the Pink Party on Castro Street, where I showed him the center of gay mecca as well as Harvey Milk’s camera shop, while we danced, him blindfolded, in the streets. People tried yanking his chain, removing his blindfold, and other shenanigans, sometimes without permission, but apparently the protective spell we cast to initiate the ritual on my back deck held well throughout the evening. We also visited the Hole in the Wall, where we removed the blindfold briefly so he could appreciate the visual panoply of this historic dive, then to the Powerhouse which we checked out and kissed and got blown on the rear patio after navigating stairs jam-packed with sweaty guys, all while he was still blindfolded and on collar and lead. Then, to Blow Buddies, the first time for both of us, where they made us remove the blindfold, and we watched lots of mindless sex in little cabins with glory holes and got blown again by a cute boy who sat on a toilet seat after we pissed in the nearby urinals. I liked how Robin Hood shared the boy freely with me and I loved the feeling of his short dark hair in my hands as my dick slid in and out of his sweet throat. I pet him as he sucked me, then kissed him after I came in his mouth, tasking my own cum on his lips. Then, we left Blow Buddies and headed to Afterglow, a Comfort & Joy party at Antler’s place in the Inner Richmond. There, we released our scene of Beauty (Robin Hood) and the Prince (moi) by Robin Hood saying, “And they lived happily ever after.” We partied a bit more there and I met a delicious faerie named Yoyo who Robin Hood urged me to get to know better, so I made out with and smoked a little pot with him. It turns out he is caretaking Eric (Cattail) and Mitcho’s cabin up at Covelo, and the next morning, after riding groggily with Mikes on Bikes (gay guys on bicycles) just after Dykes on Bikes (lesbians on motorcycles) who start the Queer Freedom Day Parade in San Francisco, I was at a brunch with Cattail and Mitcho where Cattil invited me to a little gathering over July 4th weekend at their place in Covelo. Thus, a possible time to hang out with Yoyo some more, although he may still have a “friend from New York” visiting him at that time. I’m trying not to get too attached to the notion of him falling for me, although I bet I could fall for him.

I saw him again on Queer Freedom Day when I went with the brunch boys from Johnny Thunder and Brian’s place in the Haight over to the Faerie Freedom Village. We weaved our way through the humungous crowds to drop our bikes off at the cool valet parking offered by the San Francisco Bike Coalition. The Faerie Freedom Village seemed more packed than usual, and with a lower proportion of faerie faces I knew to those I didn’t. That still meant hundreds I did meet and greet, including Ron and Rog who are real sweeties. A photographer friend persuaded Ron and me to get nekkid for pictures in the Vilalge, including some with the grease-covered buy in overalls who organizes Mikes on bikes each year. Hopefully, she will email copies of the pics as promised. I even had enough energy to stop in at the Mikes on Bikes party at Marty’s place on 14th St. on my bike ride home. I was hoping Yoyo might show up there as well, but he had been up all night since he stayed at Antler’s and probably crashed out somewhere before heading to the Mikes on Bikes party. I called and left a message with him about potentially hanging out a bit in Covelo over July 4th weekend. I will go anyway because it sounds like a fun group and an amazing place, even if I don’t get to hang with Yoyo.

Meanwhile, I’m focusing this week on Egypt, reading history and learning hieroglyphics. My project is gradually coming together and I’m very excited to be working on my true passion. Let’s hope the money side of things works out as well.

I’m really loving riding my new bike with the raised handlebars, so I don’t have to worry so much about my neck/spine trouble, and I’m ready to check out local swimming pools to get even more exercise. I’m doing yoga almost every day before I work on the novels, and I’m eating carefully to keep my weight down. I’m experimenting with going off my blood pressure medication and, so far, the blood pressure reading averages appear to be the same as when I was on the medication.

Storm’s buddy Hawke is visiting us for awhile and we are still searching for another housemate since the departure of Joannes (aka Janice) and Kat. I saw them at the Trans Rally and March on Friday, which I attended wearing a paisley skirt on my new bike.