I shot out of the buffer zone like a bullet and fell to my knees in the sand. I quickly rose, cleaning my jeans, checking out if anyone had seen me. There were a few people, but they were all between me and the pyramids, and thankfully looking at them, not me.
So there I was - standing on my own, facing the huge pyramids, wondering what to do. I would have returned to fetch the others, but obviously I had no idea how to do that, as I didn't have the foggiest where we had been.
Someone touched me. I looked down, and a little boy raised a necklace for me to see.
"Please miss, buy cheap!"
And suddenly they were everywhere, as though they'd grown out of the sand. Little children, trying to sell me the trinkets they were holding. I looked around – hardly any tourists to be seen. No wonder – people considered Egypt a dangerous place, after the uprising of the Arab spring. Families who had survived on tourism for years were desperately poor now.
"Please, miss!" they circled me.
I pulled my pockets out to show the children I had no money, and they withdrew, disappointed. They did not go far but observed me just in case I had hidden some money somewhere and would pull it out.
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