a Marsa Matruh taxi

Sands of the Sahara


MARSA MATRUH xx xx I knew I was getting off the tourist beaten path when I got on the bus to Marsa Matruh. I was the only non-Arab on the bus.

Arrival in Matruh was too late to leave for Siwa because I needed an official permit (probably since it was so close to the border of Libya).There were many eager taxis at the bus station, but I didn't take one. I left as soon as possible to find someone who could explain Matruh to me.The town had some" taxis" that were donkey drawn carts at twenty cents a ride. A cart managed by three young boys was too hard to resist. After all, I didn't know where I was going.

They took me to the passport place for Siwa, to another shop to Xerox my passport, and found me a cheap hotel right on the beach. It was not like any beach I'd ever seen before. In Israel and Sinai the men wore very bikini briefs. In Marsa Matruh, they wore trunks or pants for the most part. In Israel there were some topless women at the beach. At this beach no women wore suits. They were in flowing Arab gowns and dresses. Nobody seemed to go to the beach to work on a tan.

Copyright 2000 by Phillip Martin All rights reserved.