Well, recently back from our ten (should have been eleven) days in sunny (read: SWELTERING 40+ degree heat) Sharm-el-Sheikh.
Let’s get the “niggles” out of the way first, starting with the highly inauspicious start of us missing our outbound flight due to pile up on the M25, which meant we were stuck between 2 junctions for a two and a half hours with not a hope in hell of ever making our flight… It was only via sheer luck that I managed to call the airline with just five minutes to spare to move our flights to the next day – any later and we’d have had to pay full whack, as opposed to already hefty “administrative fee” (which as it turns out, the insurance will cover anyway – result!). Needless to say, we were up at the crack of dawn the following day and headed to Luton via the back roads rather than brave the accursed M25 again before a flight!
Once there though, we were almost regretting coming at all – the resort we’d picked (unbeknownst to us!) was Bedouin owned and therefore “dry”. Having survived the previous 48 hours only on the sure and certain promise of cocktails on the beach on arrival, let’s just say I wasn’t happy at only non-alcoholic beer on hand to ease the sheer trauma involved in just getting to this damned godforsaken country in the first place – NOT EVEN ANY SODDING WINE. Seemed like the place was a ghost town, plus barely existent wifi – and then to top it all off, our sodding aircon only went and bloody started leaking. Hardly the most auspicious of starts, to say the least…
Oh, and did I mention the shits??? Cause, oh my God, there were shits – OH came down first followed quickly by me, and at times we were tag teaming our poor beleaguered toilet… In my case, dodgy tummy also came with the added benefit of passing out cold (or rather “out hot”) for two meals on the trot – and there I have to say the local staff were wonderful. Never has an oxygen canister been administered with such loving care… ;) Eventually we were tipped off about a local antibiotic, Antinal (illegal in the UK I believe), that sorted us both right out within 24 hours – and just as well too, as at this point I was rapidly losing the will to live, and I don’t think our bed sheets could have taken much more collateral damage…
But – believe it or not – it got better from there! :)
Wine (purchased in town from the one bottle shop) on the balcony of our otherwise perfectly charming hotel at sunset soon had us chilling, and we soon cheered up once we’d discovered how crystal clear and warm the Red Sea waters were, and that the hotel had its own private coral reef on the doorstep.
Naama Bay as a town was pretty soulless and gaudy, but we still had some great evenings (once stomachs had settled!) in the bars and restaurants out there. Certainly beat those three previous days on our sick bed sharing a single takeaway meal from the hotel restaurant sat watching the various B movies of Dubai 1, given we were both a) wanting on the appetite front and b) for obvious reasons too scared to leave the safety of our air-conditioned room!
Our primary mission for the trip to learn how to dive was completed – OH passed his four-days PADI course with flying colours (even with the ever present danger of shitting his wetsuit), while I managed to revive my long neglected diving skills as well, and even enjoy the experience in spite of sadistic, shit face, mysoginist diving instructor, lugging equipment that I swear weighed more than I did, and suffering full-blown panic attack within first hour of the course… I know I wasn’t going to drown at just 2 metres, but at the time I felt like I might – and instructor shouting at me there seriously didn’t help one bit!!! Even saw a sea turtle at one point!
So overall a really nice time, if a few pitfalls – at the very least, we did our diving, got a tan, and (once tummies had settled down) a few nice cocktails and meals out… Still, was glad to get home again afterwards – Great British weather has never come as such a relief!!
And – most importantly of all – at least MIL somehow survived our absence!!!!