Saturday, November 20, 2010

In Egypt for a few days...

A river of lights

Yup - the image above is indeed the Nile at night. It was taken from the International Space Station(ISS) last month (tip from badastonomer). This is an absolutely stunning image and provides a nice overview of the narrow habitation along the Nile, and the importance of the river.

I will mostly be in Cairo (in the brightest hub towards the top of the image), but then will also go out on a 3-day excursion to Luxor - and I'm really looking forward to it! My first impression of Cairo is that it is a big chaotic city. I have recently been to Kuala Lumpur and Istanbul, and it seems that order and calm has been slowly decreasing :) (Oh - c'mon, this is just the first reaction). This is certainly true for the traffic. On the Pakistan traffic index, Kuala Lumpur was not even close. I started to recognize some similarities in Istanbul. But Cairo may give Karachi a good chase for its money - and I may even bring in Lahore in the discussion (now that's saying something).

More from Cairo coming up. In the mean time, to get excited about Luxor, here is Josh Ritter's absolutely gorgeous "The Curse" about a love affair between an archaeologist and a mummy (I had posted it earlier here). If you haven't seen it, do check it out. The video is produced and puppeteered by Ritter's drummer, Liam Hurley.


Ali said...

"I will mostly be in Cairo (in the brightest hub towards the top of the image) ..."
Please ask ISS to take another picture after you reach there. I am sure it will be even more bright. :)

A stunning image, i must agree. I didn't know Nile can be seen like this.

Kate said...

Hi, Salman -

Have been drowning in my own work and projects, but have still been enjoying reading your various posts - they are so wide-ranging, and always thought-provoking. I think one of the autistic kids I work with was trying to eat his fruit "cat-style" - having read the article, I was trying to give him pointers, but I don't know that it helped.
Anyway, I loved that video - so bizarre and yet lovely and moving. Hope you enjoy Cairo, and I'm sure you know all your readers look forward to hearing about your adventures in religion, science, culture, conversation, and good food.

Egyptian said...

Good to have you in Cairo, Salman!

Hope you enjoy your trip.

Salman Hameed said...

Thanks Egyptian. And Kate, remember, cat's tongues are slightly different than human tongues - so the experiment may not work out the same way... :)

Kate said...

Hi, Salman -

Good point indeed. It will probably sound weirder if I actually try to explain it, but he was actually eating a cup of fruit with a plastic spoon, and getting approximately .28 of a microgram of fruit juice on each spoonful, but still just as happy as a clam. But there was something in the motion, speed, and physics of it that reminded me of the cat photos, so I tried to demonstrate to him how he could be like a cat and use his tongue...and he just looked at me with these beautiful, perplexed brown eyes that he has...and went back to his method. Which was clearly superior, anyway. What do I know?
(It was a crazy Friday at the end of a nutty week...)

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