About 11 years ago I went on a trip throughout Egypt, I was 28 at the time. I started off in Cairo, then took a plane down to Luxor and a boat down the Nile to Aswan. From Aswan I took a smaller plane to Abu Simbel, an ancient Temple that was raised to avoid the flooding caused by the construction of the Aswan Dam. The views of an expansive flooded desert, with dunes popping out of the water, are one of the most memorable sights I've ever seen. This was before 9/11, but there was a lot of tension in the air, and the first time I had seen so much security on my travels. Security men with machine guns and uzis were everywhere. Large metal plates, about 10 feet wide, dotted the desert around the pyramids at Giza. When I asked what they were for, I was told they offered protection for soldiers when terrorists attacked. A year earlier, terrorists had killed about 100 travelers at one of the temples in Luxor and a bus at the Cairo museum had been bombed with tourists on board. Egypt is quite a beautiful country, but very poor and a bit intense at times. Here are pages from the sketchbook I brought with me at the time. I thought I'd show it considering all the news coming out of the country today.