We went inside the pyramid in the middle of this picture, the Pyramid of Menkaure. It was a 40 foot ramp going down, with a low ceiling, maybe 4 feet, which led into a passage, which led into a hall. Down some stairs was the original burial chamber (cleared, over millennia, by grave robbers) and another space that looked like it could have held sarcophagi of attendants or storage for items needed for the afterlife. < http://www.nationalgeographic.com/pyramids/menkaure.html> <http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/ancient/explore-ancient-egypt.html>
We took a short camel ride, which was not too different from riding on a very tall horse, apart from mounting and dismounting. This was a completely novel thing, as you have to pitch yourself backward to get down or forward to get up, since angle of the camel’s back changes so dramatically as it moves. Not something I’d like to get used to, but it was pretty cool, nonetheless.
This is the Cairo Necropolis, or the city of the dead. It is a massive graveyard founded in 642 C.E. Today, it has become a slum for some of the poorest of the poor and criminals. Most people live inside the tombs themselves, some to be near ancestors, most just to live.
more to follow tonight.