The Nubian village was our last stop in Aswan; in fact, we brought our luggage with us on the boat so that we could hop right into the taxi and head to the airport. It was a quick flight back to Cairo where we met our driver.
Since it was only 3pm by the time we had checked into the hotel, we had expected our driver to lay out a plan for the afternoon — after all the day was still young! He did lay out a plan, but it wasn’t quite as ambitious as we had hoped: “You stay here and relax!”
Umm . . .
So we took matters into our own hands. First stop, lunch. Turns out we didn’t need to go far — the hotel had a fantastic Lebanese place on site.
Followed by showers and some research into what to do next. The winner: movie night! We found a nearby mall with a cinema playing Black Panther cinema in a nearby mall and hired a driver to take us there and wait for us — we gave an approximate time for when we thought the movie would end and picked a rendezvous spot, and then headed into the mall.
It was packed! And huge! The directories were either all in Arabic or otherwise unintelligible, so we had to hunt for the cinema using our honed mall instincts. Fortunately, the mall followed the logic of most malls around the world — food courts, fancy atriums, escalators, a Cinnabon, and the cinema at the back and top.
When we got to the theatre we picked a line that formed under a Black Panther poster, picked our seats, and settled in for the show. The seats were supposed to be assigned but there was absolutely no labeling, so we just guessed — wrongly, as it turned out, when an usher came and pointed us to the seats in a different row.
It was a fun movie, well worth the hype, and it only stopped once (naturally in the middle of a chase scene) for the call to prayer.
When it was over, we emerged to find the mall even busier than ever — it would have been fun to explore more, but the movie had run longer than expected and we didn’t want our driver to disappear. Fortunately he was easy to find; or rather, it was easy for him to find us, as we were the only non-Egyptian people we saw in the entire mall and stood out quite obviously.