It's almost time to return from Cairo. Somewhere at home, a stack of paper awaits my attention for preparing our tax return. (Several people here can't believe that a retired person should have to pay taxes! I can scarcely believe it myself.)
We know it is almost time to leave when we begin to see the new crop of garlic on the streets - and the ripe watermelons begin to show up. As we understand it, the price of garlic soars to around 25 EGP for a kilogram (86 cents per pound) just before the new year's crop is harvested. Early in March, the new crop appears - by donkey cart, by truck - you have never seen so much garlic. Prices respond as you would expect and soon garlic can be had for 2.5 EGP/kilo (15 cents per pound.) When we exclaimed "A kilo of garlic?!!" our friend said, "Egyptians use a lot of garlic and they buy a lot to last until next year." We would bring home suitcases of garlic to distribute to friends and family but it's expressly forbidden at customs.
But this is also the beginning of melon season. These small softball sized melons are wonderfully sweet.
And again, this year, we didn't find this friendly watermelon salesman on the left. But there are plenty of melons available.
They are sweet and juicy again this year. But, note the price increase 4 EGP per kilo to 5 EGP over the past two years. That makes it 30 cents per pound this year.
And the flowers! If anything says spring, it is the color beginning to cover many a garden wall.
Alas, we have but three days left and lots of people to say goodbye to. I am getting close to my last blog post and may have to carry on with some after I return.