It would have been very easy to skip the tour of Alexandria. After fourteen hours going to Cairo and back and seeing more sights than one feeble brain could absorb in a day, who needed Alexandria?
But it's a beautiful city, exotic, Egyptian and Mediterranean at the same time. And my camera battery died midway through the morning, and the spare that I knew I had put in my bag was nowhere to be found (it turned out to be hiding under the bed back in my stateroom) so instead of photographing I looked.
At the new library, where teenage girls in headscarves giggle over computer terminals. At the birds sitting in a dusty date palm. At the vendors selling Egyptian kitsch and seashells by the water. At the bored men smoking on the terrace by the royal gardens. At the tomb of the unknown soldier commemorating the Six-Day war. At the people strolling the Corniche.