My daily tales in Egypt at the 32nd edition of the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) continued with the visit to the great Egypt Museum.
Now that I have visited the two historical land mark sites in Egypt, the other being the great pyramids of Giza, I can proudly count my adventurous tour in Egypt as good as done.
Located at the famous Tahrir road around the Tahrir Square in Bulaq – Cairo, the Egyptian Museum has a rich history dating as far back as 1858 since the founding days by Auguste Mariette.
This museum’s architectural style was perfected by Neoclassical architecture by Marcel Dourgnon.
The Egyptian Museum holds over 120,000 items, some of which are extremely important to ancient Egyptian history and date back over 5,000 years.
Upon arrival, in company of other journalists (about 100) from across Africa, we were warmly welcomed by the Egypt Tourism Police.
With tranquility, we all checked in through the security procedure before taking a group photo in front of the gigantic museum.
This is the main of the numerous museums in Egypt. The others include Agricultural museum, Islamic Ceramics, Mahmoud Mokhtar Museum, Egyptian Railway Museum, Egyptian Geology Museum, Museum of Islamic Art Cairo, National Museum of Egyptian Civilization, Gayer – Anderson Museum and the National Military Museum Egypt, among others.
For obvious security and precautionary reasons, inside the Grand Museum, we are subjected to another security check before accessing the main entrance.
Statues of the ancient Egyptian Kings (Pharoahs) from as far as back as the pre-dynastic period, Archaic period, Old Kingdom, Intermediate period and the late period for the leaders as Nepherites I, Khabebesh and Alexander The Great are all displayed, with Arabic and English inscriptions.
As I admire the stone painting, artifacts and other antiquities, a young beautiful twenty plus lady, Mounira Muhammad later emerges from the upper back of the three storied museum and politely introduces herself.
Mounira would be our guide for the day with five other journalists from Ghana, Nigeria, South Africa, Kenya and Zimbabwe (Anglo-phone speakers).
From the basement of the Museum, we visited each and every decoration right from the Ptolemaic epoch as the guide labored to explain the uniqueness of each piece.
Meanwhile, questions would be entertained to ascertain clarity when need necessitated.
Inside the museum, there are tombs of most Pharaohs and their lavish items which were recovered from the pyramids of Giza.
Eye catching ancient items ranging from household commodities like spoons, forks, mats, pots, saucepans, plates, needles, bones, shells, limestone, ivory, toys, keys, wooden and metallic crafts, arts, paintings, clothes and jewelry among others are displayed with inscriptions.
On the second floor, there are also cremated bodies for Tjuyu (sometimes transliterated as Thuya or Thuyu) who was an Egyptian noblewoman.
Thuya was the mother of queen Tiye, and the wife of Yuya.
She is the grandmother of Akhenaten, and great grandmother of Tutankhamun.
Another worthy place to visit inside the museum was the royal mummies hall where other cremated bodies were found.
You could cry and smile, get perplexed by the amazing collections that the Grand Egyptian Museum has.
Besides the main museum, there is a busy arts shop selling an assortment of items from jewelry, clothing, cosmetics, antiquities and art pieces.
There is booming business at this art shop as customers (including yours truly) yearn to pay a few pounds to smile home with a souvenir of sorts.
Outside the arts shop, there a center for refreshing with Egyptian coffee, tea and other beverages, of course at a fee.
From the time we entered the museum until we left, hundreds of other tourists (local and international community) are flocking the great feature periodically.
Later, I get the statistics that every calendar year, there are close to 3000 international tourists who visit the Grand Egyptian tourism.
This is a big boost to the Government of Egypt as a whole in terms of generating revenue.
Thanks for the AFCON opportunity; I witnessed everything detailed in history archives first hand.
I will forever live to attest such to many of family members, loved ones, close associates and yes, the QUEEN OF MY HEART.
For God and My Country.