Remember the survey at the beginning of the summer that suggested tourists are unhappy with the way theyâ€™re treated in Egypt? If memory serves, it blamed overcharging service industry types for many visitors making Egypt a once-in-a-lifetime experience. After a weekend trip across the Sinai, though, I think there may be another culprit, and I think the little fellow behind his clipboard might know who it is.
Snapped lounging at a highway check-stop making gestures all-too-familiar to women around Cairo, he didnâ€™t want his picture to be taken and wasnâ€™t about to offer his thoughts on the macro-economic implications of the country being overrun by half-trained goons, but I think his input is clear enough.
Iâ€™m guessing that there are quite a few people in government here who are familiar enough with Europeâ€”if only Switzerlandâ€”to understand that being openly harassed, be it by well-armed soldiers on street corners or by beltagui with guns stuffed into their jeans in the middle of the desert, isnâ€™t something that is going to encourage tourists to make a return visit.
Pity that taxi drivers and waiters are so much easier to blame.