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Every night people gather on the banks of the Nile for a walk. The place is especially crowded under the bridge, which is in front of the Hilton hotel and the archaeological museum. On the shores of the river there are many boats decorated with colorful lights, used as floating discotheques. Their owners call to the passers-by with loudspeakers, enticing them to take a musical boat ride. The boatmen’s voices mix with the Arabic music, creating an atmosphere of total cheerful chaos.
Dancing on the deck
Once a boat is full, it goes on a circular ride on the river, giving the passengers a chance to dance on the deck. Sometimes girls with turbans get up and dance, and this electrifies the atmosphere. Refreshments are also offered on the boat, but not alcoholic beverages.
The spectacle is amazing for those who are on the bridge of the Nile, watching it from above. The Arabic colors and sounds have a certain something that enchants the Greeks. We may belong to the west and depend on it, but our heart longs for these warm tints and eastern long lasting melodies. The Arabs sense this and therefore view us positively. Wherever you go and say that you are a Greek (Yunnan), all doors and hearts open at once.
Wandering until morning
After the boat ride, the walk beside the Nile begins. When you see the people and hear the loudspeakers and the crazy melodies from far away, it seems like you're watching angry protesters. Once you are near, you can see the crowds, and they are definitely not angry at all.
Everybody laughs and has fun by simple means, like it was in Greece decades ago. The peddlers selling corn, ice cream, horns and balloons are very popular. The fair lasts almost until morning, especially every Thursday, because Friday is a holiday for them.
TEXT-PHOTOS: GEORGE ZAFEIROPOULOS