An Unforgettable Vacation in Egypt.

If you are looking for a different and memorable vacation, at an incredibly low price, I suggest you carefully read this blog. My kids have just returned from a one-week vacation in Egypt.

Riding a camel wasn’t easy, but we made it

Using the highly recommended Memphis Tours, they organized the whole trip from the US by email and paid 25% of the whole amount when they made their reservations. The rest was paid when they arrived in Cairo. The price included hotels in Cairo and Luxor with breakfast and lunch, car transportation, flight to Luxor, and visits to all the monuments. Before traveling they got their visas and recommended vaccines. My daughter and son, and their families flew to London and boarded the same British Airways flight to Cairo.

Lunch at the 9 Pyramids Restaurant. We came by camel!

At Cairo International Airport, they were met at the gate by a Memphis Tours Representative who took their passports and asked them to follow her. Bypassing the long lines, she took care of all the formalities, passport control, and customs, and led them out of the airport to their van in no time. The Rep introduced them to their driver, English-speaking guide, and bodyguard who would accompany them for the whole week. This completely reassured my daughter.

The van drove them to the Kempinski Hotel (German chain of hotels) in downtown Cairo, right on the Nile. That first night they had dinner on the terrace of the hotel and enjoyed the magnificent view of Cairo by night.

At the step pyramid of Saqqara with Emad, our tour guide, an M.S. in History and a well of information.

On Day One, they went to the Pyramids, rode camels to tour the area, visited the Sphynx, and reached the restaurant where they enjoyed a delicious lunch of grilled lamb and chicken kabab. In the afternoon they visited the step pyramid of Saqqara, and went inside one of the pyramids.

The famous Khan El Khalili Bazaar where we shop to our heart’s content.

On Day Two, they visited the Citadel, (an old fortress) and the old museum and saw the King Tut exhibit. (The new Big Museum is still not open yet). After lunch they spent time in the Khan El Khalili Bazaar and enjoyed the inexpensive shopping.

The Temple of Karnak

On Day Three, they flew to Luxor, visited the Temples of Luxor and Karnak, sailed in a felucca and enjoyed a sunset on the Nile.

Going down a tomb in the Valley of the Kings. We saw King Tut’s mummy!

On Day Four, they left the Sofitel hotel at 8 am, (the renovated old Windsor Palace where many celebrities stayed). Right after breakfast, they went to the Valley of the Kings where they visited 5 Tombs out of 63, then they drove to the Colossi of Memnon, and later to the Temple of Queen Hatshepsut. Back at the hotel, they spent their afternoon in the pool, and after dinner attended a Sound and Light show at the temple.

In front of Queen Hatshepsut Temple. Her son had her head removed from all statues and paintings and replaced with his own head!!!

On Day Five, they flew back to Cairo, and on Day Six, they visited the Old Cairo churches that dated from the second century A.C. and the Ben Ezra Synagogue, sometimes referred to as the El-Geniza Synagogue or the Synagogue of the Levantines. According to local folklore, it is located on the site where baby Moses was found.

Sound and Light at the Temple of Luxor

The six-day trip to Egypt cost them less than any cruise or local vacation. The dads were happy to have a driver, the moms enjoyed the inexpensive shopping, and the girls were delighted to have Internet in both hotels. They were able to post their pictures on Instagram from day one. They are already planning another fabulous trip for next year to discover more wonderful monuments in Egypt.    

The Gods of Dark Love

The book is based on the Legend of Isis and Osiris. This is a sensual dark romance, with explicit love scenes, but not erotic in frequency or type.)

According to the legend, the evil Egyptian god of storm, Seth, killed his brother Osiris, chopped him into fourteen pieces and flung them all over Egypt. Isis, goddess of family, reassembled thirteen of his body parts. Since she couldn’t find his supernatural male member, where his godly power was stored, she reattached a human one. Isis has always loved Osiris, the charming god of labor. While dreaming of marriage, family and a son, she helps him fight Seth. Together they struggle to survive iniquities and perils.

His trip to the Afterlife has changed Osiris. He regrets his past womanizing. Guided by oracles she utters when they make love, they search lands and seas for his missing organ so he can recover his godly attributes. Osiris has fallen in love with Isis but the sins of his past and their unexpected consequences threaten to separate them more painfully than Seth’s mayhem and curses.

SECRET KISSES

The story is set in Ohio, and includes a visit to Egypt and a cruise on the Nile River. For love and friendship, three best friends will defy families and society.

Katy Mahoney, Hoda Seif, and Sarah Kohn. Three girls from different backgrounds and religions pledged to maintain their friendship forever.

For five years, the three friends meet and exchange confidences and advice. Life is so confusing for a woman in love with a man from a different religion. Sarah is concerned about Omar’s narrow-mindedness and decides he has to change. Katy knows she’ll have a battle royal on her hands with her pious Catholic mother. And Hoda is in a worse shape. Her family’s religion forbids her to marry an infidel.

Will the three friends manage to convince their families to let them marry for love or will tradition tear the lovers apart?

This book is part of UNFORGETTABLE LOVE, Unforgettable Wonder

The Statue of Liberty

From the moment of its dedication, the Statue of Liberty has been an enigmatic monument.

The colossal statue was a gift from France and the brainchild of French sculptor Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi to symbolize America’s message of liberty to the world.

The sculptor behind the Statue of Liberty, Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi, was born in 1834 in France, in the Alsace region on the border of Germany. When Auguste was nine, his mother Charlotte moved with her children to Paris and allowed them to study under some of France’s most accomplished artists, braving the city’s civil unrest for her sons’ education.

After completing his first commissioned work at age twenty, a large bronze statue of Napoleonic General Jean Rapp, Bartholdi traveled with a group of French cultural ambassadors to photograph works of antiquity in Egypt.

They encountered desert landscapes where ancient cities lay in ruins but colossal statues remained, inspiring Bartholdi to write “These granite beings, in their imperturbable majesty, seem to be still listening to the most remote antiquity. Their kindly and impassible glance seems to ignore the present and to be fixed upon an unlimited future.”

As an emerging artist, Bartholdi actively searched for commissions as well as inspiration, and he secured a meeting with Khedive Isma’il Pasha of Egypt, the ruler overseeing and funding the French construction of the Suez Canal. Bartholdi presented a figurine for a colossal lighthouse depicting an Egyptian fellaha, a female serf, entitled Egypt Carrying the Light to Asia. This design was ultimately rejected by the khedive.

In 1865, a French political intellectual and anti-slavery activist named Edouard de Laboulaye proposed that a statue representing liberty be built for the United States. This monument would honor the United States’ centennial of independence and the friendship with France.

The Statue of Liberty was built in France between 1875 and 1884. Bartholdi required the assistance of an engineer to address structural issues associated with designing such a colossal copper sculpture. Alexandre Gustave Eiffel, just prior to creating his famed Eiffel Tower, was engaged to design the massive iron pylon and secondary skeletal framework that allows the Statue’s copper skin to move independently yet stand upright.

Construction of the Statue was completed in France in July 1884. The massive sculpture stood tall above the rooftops of Paris. For its trans-Atlantic voyage aboard the frigate Isère, the Statue was reduced to 350 individual pieces and packed in 214 crates. The ship arrived in New York Harbor on June 17, 1885.

Back in America that same year architect Richard Morris Hunt was selected to design the Statue’s granite pedestal, and construction got underway. The pedestal was completed in April 1886. The statue was reassembled on Liberty Island in 1886, although the torch has been redesigned or restored several times since its installation. Finally, on October 28, 1886, President Grover Cleveland oversaw the dedication of the Statue of Liberty in front of thousands of spectators.

The sculptor behind the Statue of Liberty, Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi found his inspiration in the Land of the Pharaohs. You can take an armchair trip to Egypt, visit the Pyramids of Giza, and cruise along the Nile to Upper Egypt and the famous temples by reading SECRET KISSES.

Katy Mahoney, Hoda Seif, and Sarah Kohn. Three girls from different backgrounds and religions pledged to maintain their friendship forever.

On Graduation Day, Katy meets Hoda’s oldest brother Tarek, a dark and handsome medical graduate who can’t take his eyes off her. The graduation celebration ends with Hoda and Omar breaking off their engagement, Hoda exchanging a secret kiss wit Liam, Kathy’s cousin, and Omar befriending Sarah and renting a room in her house.

Three best friends, three secret and forbidden romances.

For five years, the three friends meet and exchange confidences and advice. Sarah is concerned about Omar’s narrow-mindedness and decides he has to change. Katy knows she’ll have a battle royal on her hands with her pious Catholic mother. And Hoda is in a worse shape. Her family’s religion forbids her to marry an infidel.

Will they choose the men they love and break with families and traditions? Difficult choice.

ON PREORDER

Kissing Plans: From best friend to lovers. But she’s engaged. What better way to get rid of the unpleasant fiancé? Finding him a girlfriend.
Family Plans: A plane crash destroyed their lives. Can it bring them together despite the painful secrets it uncovered?
Healing Plans: He adopted two minority children but lost his wife. Finally things settle for him, until the lovely surgeon he hires turns his life upside down.

It’s 1964 Again- #spring #memories #Inspiration @jacqbiggar

Spot the birdie?

Today is the first day of spring and it’s my birthday!

I thought it might be fun to take a trip down memory lane and visit the year I was born- 1964

But first:

According to Siri, I’m a Friday’s child, though you’d never catch me in bloomers, lol. How about you?

In the music world, The Beatles were racking up the top 5 on The Billboard Top 100 with I Want to Hold Your Hand leading the way.

It was a feat no musical group had ever accomplished and many thought would never occor again.

The average house in the US cost 15,000 and rent was $115 a month (imagine!)

Milk was priced at $0.93.

A gallon of gas- $0.25 compared to the $1.94 a litre we currently pay in BC

Minimum wage was $1.15 an hour while ours in 2022 is $15.55

The 1964 Mustang was a mind-boggling $2300.00 (yes, I’m drooling!)

Apparently, Dragons are the most powerful in the Chinese zodiac, gifted with courage and intelligence, but are hotheads with sharp tongues (Oops!)

There are five types of dragons depending on the year you were born. For 1964, it is the Wood Dragon- introverted (yes), less enthusiastic (maybe), and lacking good relationships (not true!)

Dragons who will be engaged in creative work, literature, etc., you will have more inspiration this year of the Tiger, and maybe one day your works will become a hit. (Yes!)

Mary Poppins by Walt Disney released August of 1964 and grossed $102,272,145

The Civil Rights Act of 1964 was signed into law.

Mohammad Ali became the heavyweight boxing champion of the world.

Sidney Poiter won the Oscar for his role in Lilies of The Field

Alaska suffered a 9.2 earthquake on Good Friday, March 30th

1964 was a busy year in history!

In 2022, we have war in Ukraine, a wave of hate crimes, poverty, overdoses, a pandemic… but in the midst of it all there are stories of kindness, generosity, and family values. We can do better- I truly believe humans are worth the effort.

Today I choose life. Every morning when I wake up I can choose joy, happiness, negativity, pain… To feel the freedom that comes from being able to continue to make mistakes and choices – today I choose to feel life, not to deny my humanity but embrace it.

Kevyn Aucoin

Freaky Fun Facts by @JoanReeves #mgtab

Add these to your trivia treasury!

First I’ll apologize if this post looks crazy. I logged in to post for today and discovered WordPress changed everything since last month. Oh, well, here goes my blog attempt. Wish me luck.

History is full of quirky little facts. Sometimes, I like to work one or two of these interesting tidbits into the books I write—as long as I can do it organically.

For example, in Heat Lightning, a romantic suspense, I had the nervous heroine entertain the hero with some trivia she’d read about the invention of the vacuum cleaner. Sounds silly, I know, but it broke the ice between them. Trust me, there was plenty of ice between those two.

Of course, I collect far more facts than I can ever use. For your entertainment, in no particular order, here are a few to entertain you. Warning, I read these in a couple of those trivia collection books but cannot verify the truthfulness of them.

Hard To Believe, But…

In 1439, kissing was officially banned in England in an effort stop disease from spreading. (Bet the whole nation became a bunch of lawbreakers.)

In 1912, a Paris orphanage held a raffle to raise money and gave away live babies as prizes!

John F. Kennedy, Anthony Burgess, Aldous Huxley, and C.S. Lewis all died on the same day.

Karl Marx was once a correspondent for the New York Daily Tribune.

Ronald Reagan was a lifeguard during high school and saved 77 people’s lives. (Seriously?)

Everyone knows the Aztecs made human sacrifices, but did you know in 1487, 20,000 people were sacrificed at the dedication of the temple in Tenochtitlan.

The Romans used human urine as mouthwash. (OMG!!!)

On the subject of urine, in the Regency period when men retired to a room for whisky, it was common for them to urinate into the fireplace.

In the 19th century a popular medicine for kids was Mrs. Winslow’s Soothing Syrup which had morphine as the active ingredient.

In early Rome a father could legally kill anyone in his family.

A couple of centuries ago, pregnant women were not given anything to relieve the pain of childbirth because pain was considered God’s punishment for Eve’s eating the forbidden fruit.

Attila the Hun bled to death from a nosebleed on his wedding night.

People have been wearing glasses for about 700 years.

February 1865 is the only month in recorded history not to have a full moon.

There is no known civilization that did not tax. Even the very first known civilization, the Sumerians, recorded their tax history on clay cones.

For Your Consideration: Heat Lightning

Secrets, lies, passion. What Tessa doesn’t remember may just be the death of her.

Her husband found her, claimed her, rescued her. David’s touch makes Tessa throb. Desire flashes between them like heat lightning on a summer night. Her body knows David, but when she looks at him, he is a stranger to her. Not a flicker of memory is left of him or their life together since she awakened from a coma.

Amnesia has left her with nothing but questions. Who is she? Why does David seem to hate her even as he pulls her into his arms? What is he hiding? How can she trust him when her gut says, Trust no one?

As her love for David grows, so does her feeling of foreboding—as if something awful is watching and waiting.

Add Heat Lightning to your Library. It’s a free read on Amazon Kindle Unlimited, or buy it and keep it forever.

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Post Script

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