Neale and I were constant companions over the days that followed. After spending a second night in his larger room, I decided to pass on keeping up appearances and moved in with him. There was no point in us both paying for rooms, if we were only going to use one. You couldn’t separate us if you tried. We wandered city streets, chatting, laughing, holding hands and finding quiet corners to share a passionate kiss or two. We met back up with Nimesh for a personalized tour of the city as well. Neither Neale nor I had much cash flowing out of our pockets, but that did not dampen our euphoric spirits. Burgeoning love feeds the soul.
The problem was that the more time Neale and I spent together, the less we wanted to be separated. While in Dar es Salaam that wasn’t a problem, but neither of us had the money to stay put and the city was quickly losing its appeal. We were both travellers and our feet itched to move on. Neale was headed North. After my failed attempt at being an overland courier, I was still drifting and sought direction for which way to go next. I felt like home was vaguely calling my name, but Africa was in my blood and I loathed the idea of leaving it. Temptation arose and I had no good reasons to turn it down. Neale’s hearty laugh and generous compliments had me in favour of pretty much anything that he suggested. So when the proposal came to accompany him to Cairo, it took me all of two seconds to agree.
While I did get excited at the prospect of seeing Egypt, a few worries couldn't help but cross my mind. Was it really a good idea to be traipsing across the continent with a virtual stranger? Hmm. Well, I had been doing that for the last nine months with a steady stream of strangers, many of whom I knew even less than Neale. So that could be crossed off the list of worries easily enough. If we went to Egypt together though, how and when would I get back to Cape Town, or Canada for that matter? Seeing the excitement in Neale’s eyes erased any doubts that my brain tried to muster though. I was present in the miracle of the moment. I had travelled long enough to trust my instincts when the fates presented new opportunities to me. If it felt right, then it was meant to be. The idea of this potential trip excited me and definitely screamed as an opportunity to be taken advantage of. How could I not jump on board? Neale's enthusiasm was contagious and it was decided.
All that stood in the way, was the means to get there. So over a cheap beer in our favourite pub, we decided that we would leave for Cairo as soon as we could muster up some plane tickets. Giddy with anticipation, we finished our pitcher and wandered home arm in arm for the night. The plan was to find a travel agent in the morning and leave on a jet plane to Cairo, as soon as we were able.