The Vacation Vacuum

Trip Start Dec 31, 2004
Trip End Apr 22, 2005

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Flag of Egypt  ,
Saturday, March 26, 2005

Dahab is Egyptian flypaper. Practically everyone I've met these past several days has admitted that they came here intending to stay but a short while and now they've been stuck here, "one week", "a month", six months. The town also teems with expats from Russia to America and exudes an international air. Its virtual nothingness and sanitary global homogeny is exactly what I normally try to avoid in my journeys. "Nothing" however has come at just the right time and now I'm wallowing in it.

For the past several days I've done virtually nothing. I've lounged on sofas by the beach overlooking the Gulf of Arabia and enjoyed mammoth plates of shish kabob and tall glasses of warm coconut tapioca. I've gone from restaurant to restaurant, putting my feet up and writing all day long and I've been loving it. I had initially considered staying here but a day or so en route to Cairo but almost a week later and I can barely conjure enough strength to book a bus ticket.

This has been a much appreciated vacation within the journey and I'm thrilled that there is nothing to see here besides the coast of Saudi Arabia on the shoreline while I splay myself out on cushions and drink doll-sized cups of viscous coffee. To best describe the sort of town Dahab is I'd probably say it's a cross between Mykonos and South Beach but with a more laid-back feel. There is everything a traveler needs here and far too much of what they don't need. About the only culture to be found here comes from the radio and even that takes a backseat to western pop music. I'll be starved for adventure and culture later but right now I'm only starved for more cheap Middle Eastern food and a bit of sunshine.

I'll wake up and escape in a couple of days. If you'll excuse me I have a favourite table in the shade on the seashore that's calling my name for a plate of kofta, pita and hummus and a little glass of anise tea.

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