January 27th, 28th, & 29th, 2009
The days leading up to our trip the news was filled with images of the unrest in Egypt. Egyptians were trying to overthrow Mubarak. We were on the fence whether we were going to go on the trip or cancel it. We decided that we should continue with our plan.
The day finally arrived for our flight, we were excited, and when we reached the airport, of course, there was a huge snow storm, so that caused a lot of flight delays. We boarded the plane, so we thought that we were going but as we were sitting waiting to take off the ice was forming on the wings they tried several times to get us going but were unsuccessful. Finally, around midnight they canceled our flight and told us to come back the next day. We should’ve taken that as a sign but we didn’t.
The next day we were back at the airport waiting for the flight while watching the news it looked like Egypt was not a safe place to travel to. We decided to call our tour company Abercrombie and Kent, they told us not to worry, and they would never put us in harm’s way this happens all the time, and it would be over in a day or two.
This time the flight took off. Finally, after 11 hours we arrived. We were met by a representative from the tour company, and he told us we could not get to our scheduled hotel because it was too dangerous so they took us to an emergency hotel which made us nervous. Upon arrival at the Fairmont hotel, the security gave us a hard time getting in which didn’t help the bad situation we were already in. After about five minutes of back and forth, they finally allowed us entry. We checked in an decided to settle in and get ready for a quick bite to eat since it was late. As soon as we turned the Television on Secretary of state, Hillary Clinton was on, and she said: “I urge all US citizens not to travel abroad to Egypt.”
John and I looked at each other and said “WOW that’s great” We decided at that moment that we needed to get out of there as soon as possible. John called our American Express representative, and she scheduled the flight out the very next morning. Other people that were on the same tour with us decided that they were going to wait a few days to see if the issues were resolved.
The next day we headed back to the airport along the way we could see the military all over with guns and bayonets attached and heavy weapons. There were massive amounts of traffic, so I thought we would never make it to the airport. Once at the airport it was a zoo, a total nightmare we had to pay $5,000 to buy new tickets. At that point, if they cost $10, 000 I would’ve paid. The chaos was nerve wracking we didn’t speak the language people are yelling, and you have no idea what they are saying. We decided since we were already that far from home we should change our plans and head to Europe so off to Paris, France.