Tuesday, August 31, 2021

POTD: Commerce on the Nile

From 2019 11 21 Kom Ombo and Edfu

Today's photo-of-the-day is from the Nile River. As our cruise ship motored north down the Nile, we noticed a small boat with two men positioned squarely in our path. As we got closer, the small boat made no effort to get out of the way. Our ship didn't veer from our course. It seemed a collision was certain.

It was all by design. As we passed by the narrowest of margins, one of the men in the small boat tossed a line to the cruise ship and secured it, jerking the small boat around. Suddenly the small boat was being towed alongside the much bigger cruise ship.

Then the plan revealed itself. The two men began taking souvenirs out, waving them to the passengers on deck and offering them for sale. If anyone showed interest, they would toss the goods up on deck for inspection and the tourists would toss money down for purchase. How nothing was lost to the sea is a question I have never found the answer to, but I think crew members on deck acted as middlemen for the whole process.

Eventually, we spotted another cruise ship approaching us from the other direction. Our merchants packed up, untied their boat, and maneuvered themselves in front of the other cruise ship for a return journey back where they started. Commerce on the Nile.

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