I am standing in a sand storm, it is midnight
the air is hot and muggy. strands of my hair get whisked away from
my face, tangled up in dust.
My brother and I sit astride a giant camel,
warm and breathing beneath an itchy hair-rug saddle. We are
swung forwards, almost horizontal, then backwards, as the
camel stands, straightening his legs. We
tip from side to side as he walks, like two water jugs
on a Dutchman's back, or the breasts of a woman with
a baby in her belly. It is our first night in Cairo and
it is loud.
Cars honk their horns, people bark in
curry-laden English, men wearing long white
dresses ebb into the shadows.