18/09/2006 Issue 191 Past Issues

Red Sea Newsletter

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Feature Article... The Holy Month of Ramadan

The expected start date of Ramadan
is 24th or 25th September 2006.

Ramadan Kareem!

The SpotRedSea Newsletter wishes all its readers a peaceful Ramadan.

The Fast of Ramadan

Ramadan is the ninth month of the Muslim calendar. The Month of Ramadan is also when it is believed the Holy Quran "was sent down from heaven, a guidance unto men, a declaration of direction, and a means of Salvation".

It is during this month that Muslims fast. It is called the Fast of Ramadan and lasts the entire month. Ramadan is a time when Muslims concentrate on their faith and spend less time on the concerns of their everyday lives. It is a time of worship and contemplation.

During the Fast of Ramadan strict restraints are placed on the daily lives of Muslims. They are not allowed to eat or drink during the daylight hours. Smoking and sexual relations are also forbidden during fasting. At the end of the day the fast is broken with prayer and a meal called the iftar. In the evening following the iftar it is customary for Muslims to go out visiting family and friends. The fast is resumed the next morning.

According to the Holy Quran:

One may eat and drink at any time during the night "until you can plainly distinguish a white thread from a black thread by the daylight: then keep the fast until night".

The good that is acquired through the fast can be destroyed by five things:

- the telling of a lie
- slander
- denouncing someone behind his back
- a false oath
- greed or covetousness

These are considered offensive at all times, but are most offensive during the Fast of Ramadan.

During Ramadan, it is common for Muslims to go to the Masjid (Mosque) and spend several hours praying and studying the Quran. In addition to the five daily prayers, during Ramadan Muslims recite a special prayer called the Taraweeh prayer (Night Prayer). The length of this prayer is usually 2-3 times as long as the daily prayers. Some Muslims spend the entire night in prayer.

On the evening of the 27th day of the month, Muslims celebrate the Laylat-al-Qadr (the Night of Power). It is believed that on this night Muhammad first received the revelation of the Holy Quran. And according to the Quran, this is when God determines the course of the world for the following year

When the fast ends (the first day of the month of Shawwal) it is celebrated for three days in a holiday called Id-al-Fitr (the Feast of Fast Breaking). Gifts are exchanged. Friends and family gather to pray in congregation and for large meals. In some cities fairs are held to celebrate the end of the Fast of Ramadan.



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History of Egypt... Hatshepsut


Hatshepsut (throne name Maat-ka-re) "the female pharaoh" and the three Thutmoses

Hatshepsut, was the daughter of Thutmose I and Queen Ahmose Nefertari. Hatshepsut (1473-1458 BC) was married to her half brother Thutmose II perhaps in order to strengthen his claim to the throne. Hatshepsut had a daughter by her husband/half brother Thutmose II, but the heir to the throne, the future Thutmose III, was in fact the son of one of his father's concubines.

HatshepsutAs Thutmose III was the only male child, and his mother wasn't the queen, he was married to his half sister Neferura in order to reinforce his position as the rightful heir. He was still very young when his father (Thutmose II) died, therefore his step-mother Hatshepsut was appointed as his regent.

Hatshepsut then went one step further and had herself crowned "king". This allowed her to enjoy a long co-regency with the young Thutmose III and effectively blocked him from full power. She seems to have been supported by the priests of Amoun, and some of the reliefs in her mortuary temple at Deir el-Bahri (near the Valley of the Kings) reinforced her claim to the throne by emphasising her divine birth, the result of a union between Amoun and her mother Queen Ahmose.

During her reign there was renewed building activity at Thebes and elsewhere, culminating in her mortuary temple as probably the finest of her buildings. In the temple, reliefs tell of the transport of two enormous obelisks from the quarries at Aswan to the temple of Amoun-Ra at Karnak, and trading expeditions to the land of Punt ("land of the god", a region of East Africa whose precise location today is unknown) Byblos (ancient coastal town in modern Lebanon, 40km north of Beirut) and the Sinai (peninsula situated between Egypt and the levant).

Punt was the source of many exotic products such as gold, aromatic resins, blackwood, ebony, ivory, slaves and wild animals such as monkeys and baboons. As a distant and foreign land, Punt acquired an air of fantasy, and as such is mentioned in some narrative tales and poems from the Middle and New kingdoms.

Temple of HatshepsutMonuments of Hatshepsut frequently portray her in kingly costume and the famous royal "false beard", often referring to her as though she were male (probably in accordance with the accepted decorum of kingship). When Thutmose III reached maturity he eventually became the sole ruler, but it is unclear whether Hatshepsut simply died or had to be forcibly removed from power.

After her death, many of her reliefs sustained damage, where attempts were made to remove her name from them. It was originally thought that Thutmose III had immediately set about removing his step-mother's name from the monuments as retribution for her seize of power, but it is now known that this did not actually happen until considerably later in his reign. Hatshepsut's name was also omitted from subsequent king lists, indicating that her reign was perhaps considered by some to have been inappropriate and contrary to tradition.

Although a tomb had been prepared for her in the Valley of the Kings (discovered by Howard Carter in 1903) there is no evidence that it was ever used for her burial. She may have been buried in an earlier tomb in the cliffs to the south of Deir el-Bahri which had been constructed before her rise to the throne.









China's Huawei, Sweden's Ericsson to build Egypt's 3rd mobile network

Telecom equipment maker, Huawei Technologies Co, along with with Sweden's Ericsson, have jointly won the bid by Etisalat to build Egypt's third mobile network, Xinhua news agency reported. There were seven bidders. The report said that the project was was worth around 1.2 bln usd. Etisalat was previously granted the third mobile telephone network license in Egypt. Mobile users in Egypt currently total more than 14 mln, or 19 pct of the population and this is expected to rise to around 35 pct within 3 years. Vodafone and Mobinal currently operate in Egypt.

Gazprom eyes joining gas projects in Egypt

Gazprom eyes joining gas projects in EgyptThe head of Gazprom discussed Thursday Russian-Egyptian cooperation in the natural gas sphere with Egypt's ambassador to Russia, the energy giant said Thursday.

Alexei Miller and Ezzat Saad discussed cooperation in the production, transportation, refining and sales of hydrocarbons, including liquefied natural gas, in Egypt.

Saad said that the government of Egypt, which has proven natural gas reserves of 1.76 trillion cubic meters and oil reserves 500 million metric tons (3.68 billion bbl), was ready to help develop cooperation between Gazprom and Egyptian energy companies.

Egypt, which recently doubled gas production and currently produces some 31 billion cu m of gas per year, started exporting gas via the Egypt-Jordan pipeline in 2003 and commissioned its first LNG plant in 2004.

National Bank of Egypt taking first step to regional expansion with Dubai office

The National Bank of Egypt (NBE) will open a representative office in Dubai next week in a bid to expand its business across the Arab world. A high-level delegation led by Husain Abdul Aziz, board chairman, will visit Dubai next week to open the office. A spokesman said: "The office would begin providing a set of services in Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah as well as the UAE in general."

"The Dubai office is a first step towards regional expansion in Arab markets following the success achieved by the bank's new units in London, New York, South Africa and China," the spokesman added. The new office will provide a complete information system to businessmen and investors from both countries.

The NBE is part of the consortium led by etisalat which won the $3 billion bid for Egypt's third mobile licence.






www.elgouna.com El Gouna, The Red Sea's Premier Leisure Destination

What's On... in Villa Kunterbunt


New a la carte menu at Villa Kunterbunt
starting from Monday 18th September 2006

Some delicious examples from the Villa Kunterbunt Menu:

  • Salad of Cquille Saint-Jacques and Shrimps with Mango Chutney and White Balsamico

  • Waterzooi (A classic stew of Belgian cuisine, made from fish and chicken with cream)

  • Käsespätzle (Typical southern German outland dish with cheese)

  • Pullet Breast with Dates-Nuts Filling and Sherry Cream Sauce

  • Veal Escalope in Roquefort Cream Sause with Apple Potato Gratin

  • Camel Filet Tenderloin with Chocolate Sauce

  • Ostrich Steak with Couscous and Sauce of Dates

  • Jumbo Shrimps with Homemade Noodles in Cream Sauce with Smoked Garlic and Truffles

  • Filet of Parrotfish with Potato Sauerkraut

  • Sweet Canneloni with Sauce of Berries

  • Crunchy Ice Parfait with Baiser, Brittle and Chocolate




For more details and the complete menu of Villa Kunterbunt please have a look at www.bordiehn.com

Friday 22nd September 2006 8 pm: Aagain our musical " The best of Cats" with Alla Sabirova Dance Company Hurghada and her Kids from 6 to 15 at Villa Kunterbunt Stage







Ask Harry: Useful tips for Residents


Harry Krueger - The new SpotRedSea columnistHarry Krueger, German resident in Hurghada for more than 2 years already, and owner of Cafe del Mar, will give tips and tricks around the residential life in Egypt and especially Hurghada from now on in our SpotRedSea Newsletter.

If you have any questions concerning life in Egypt - ask Harry! (Send to: news@spotlocal.net)

Schutz bei Unfall- und Erkrankung

Die Nil Hospital Mitgliedskarte für Expats ist da! Endlich ist es gelungen, einen günstigen Schutz bei Unfall und Erkrankung für Residenten mass zu schneidern - ein Meilenstein auf dem Weg gesundheitliche und finanzielle Risiken abzusichern.

Viele wiegen sich in dem falschen Glauben einen Versicherungsschutz zu haben oder in der naiven Hoffnung, dass schon nichts passieren möge. Über 90 Prozent der 10.000 in Hurghada ansässigen Ausländer leben ohne wirksamen Versicherungsschutz!

Die steigende Anzahl von Unfällen bei beruflichen und sportlichen Aktivitäten, als Fussgänger oder Autofahrer im Strassenverkehr zwingt den Tatsachen ins Auge zu blicken und Vorsorge zu treffen.

Im medizinischen Notfall kann lebensrettende Zeit verloren gehen bis die Zahlungsmodalitäten geklärt sind. In der Praxis wird bis zur Begleichung der Behandlungshonorare der Reisepass einbehalten. Der Patient kann nicht ausreisen ohne die oft mehrere Tausend Euro lautende Rechnung zu begleichen. Die Zahlungs muss durch Verwandte oder Freunde in der Heimat erfolgen, die zu Recht Fahrlässigkeit vorwerfen, insbesondere wenn Kredite aufgenommen werden müssen. Das Abenteur Ägypten wird ein teurer Albtraum.

Dieses gesundheitliche und finanzielle Risiko deckt eine Mitgliedschaft im Nil Hospital ab. Das führende Hospital in Hurghada gewährt im Ereignisfall die medizinisch notwendige Heilbehandlung eines Mitgliedes wegen akuter Krankheit oder Unfallfolgen, eingeschlossen ist die zahnärztliche Notfallbehandlung und der kostenfreie Krankentransport im Ambulanzwagen im Umkreis von 70 Kilometern.

Auch bei nicht durch die Mitgliedschaft gedeckten Leistungen im Falle von chronischen Krankheiten braucht ein Mitglied nicht zu befürchten überhöhte Rechnungen gestellt zu bekommen, sondern zahlt die niedrigeren, auch von Einheimischen verlangten Gebührensätze. Zusätzlich erhalten Mitglieder darauf noch 10 Diskount. Diese und viele weitere Vorteile machen eine Mitgliedschaft sinnvoll und erschwinglich (günstige Tarife für Singles, Familien und Firmen). Die Aufnahme erfolgt zur Zeit ohne Altersgrenze und setzt keinen Gesundheits Check voraus.

Download Bedingungen der Nile Hospital Mitgliedskarte (PDF/47 kb)

Stay protected in Case of an Accident or Illness

The Nile Hospital Membership Card for expats is now available! Finally an affordable cover in case of an accident or illness is available to residents - a milestone on the way to insure your health as well as financial risks.

Many people are in the wrong belief, or simply in the naive hope that just nothing would happen to them. More than 90% of the 10,000 foreigners resident in Hurghada are living here without effective insurance cover!

The rising number of accidents while on the job or during sporting activities, as a pedestrian or while driving a car, forces you to face the facts and take adequate precautions.

During a medical emergency, life-saving time can be lost until payment terms have been settled. Usually your passport will be kept until you have fully paid all medical dues. Thus you will not be able to leave the country without having paid the bill which will easily amount to thousands of Euros. Payment will then have to be effected through family or friends back at home, who - and rightly so - will accuse you of negligence, especially if they will need to take out loans on your behalf. Your "Egyptian adventure" has become an expensive nightmare.

Membership at the Nile Hospital will cover this health and financial risk. Should a claim arise, this leading hospital will grant the required medical treatment to its member in case of acute illness or the results of an accident; this includes emergency dental treatment and free transport by ambulance within a radius of 70 km.

Even in case of treatment not covered through the membership, such as in the case of chronic illness, a member does not need to fear high invoices. They will only need to pay the lower rate which is applicable to locals. In addition, members are granted a 10% discount on this lower fee. These and many other advantages make a membership worthwhile and affordable (favourable rates for singles, families and companies). Membership is currently being granted without age limit or health check.

Download Terms and Conditions for your Membership at the Nile Hospital (PDF/71 kb)


Heaven Bistro
  • International Cuisine
  • T-Bone, Porterhouse and Filletsteaks
  • Incredible Delicious Salads
  • Daily Specials
  • Sandwiches to match a Main Course
  • Cake & Sweet of the Day
  • Variety of Bread from our Bakery
  • Catering & Party menu

Now Wireless Internet Connection available!!!


Parents & Kids

Are your kids watching too much TV?

Television can become a replacement for family interaction. When TV programs dominate the evening routine, it is likely that family dynamics suffer. Children need to develop relationship skills. The place our children first learn the verbal craft of interacting is at home. Television can decrease interactions with one another, and stunt the development of our family relationships.

Using television as a relaxation tool, while seemingly benign, can encourage passive retreat instead of engagement in family. A kind of "hypnotism" can result which promotes withdrawal from relationships and passive entertainment as the answer to a stressful day. Too much television or too rigid a viewing schedule can reduce intimacy in the family. Not only can we become too "zombied out" to share our feelings, but we run the danger of turning to the neon light of the screen instead to our family members for nourishment.

TV entertainment can become addictive because it can be used for instant diversion from negative feelings of pain, sadness, inadequacy or even boredom. But, like any addiction, engaging in the behavior results in decreased pain in the short run, yet leaves you no closer to resolving these feelings or developing yourself in the long run. Instead, things that are "bothering" you are merely suppressed and temporarily forgotten. Coping or finding answers may be put on hold permanently.

Yet, it is possible that watching TV can also be used as a springboard for communication and sharing opinions and ideas, if you as parents encourage your children to do so. Naturally, this means choosing a show that might encourage your youngsters to express themselves, their views and ideas. Time must be allotted for sharing afterwards, not just between commercials! One of the best ways to encourage discussion is to videotape the show so that you can pause it for family discussion and interaction.

Another way to enhance television viewing with family interactions is to comment on the script, writing, camera shots, direction and acting of the piece, WHILE IN PROGRESS. I learned the value of this approach from my husband whose career is in video and computer animation. He has taught me that commercials can be a work of art! Imagine my surprise. Yet, our son and daughter found that TV could be an interactive event in the family. That is, if you do not take it too seriously! Ongoing comments about plot twists or "good" or "bad" acting might disturb some viewers. But it is great family fun!

Use good judgment. Develop a time and place for active participation in family games, music or other enjoyable activities. Leave the TV off on a night you would usually watch it, just to see what happens!

You may be pleasantly surprised to find that you learn more about your partner or your children. Try reading a book for relaxation. Reading material may prove easier to put down if a family member wants to interact with you.

Remember, emotional availability is the key to healthy family relationships. Be sure that the TV watching you do supports rather than inhibits family bonding and communication!









Spanish Garlic Shrimp

  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 lb shrimp, unshelled
  • 2 teaspoons sweet paprika
  • 1/4 cup medium-dry sherry
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, minced
  • fresh lemon juice, to taste
  • salt and black pepper
Spanish Garlic Shrimp
  1. In a large, heavy skillet set over moderately high heat, heat the oil until it is hot.

  2. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, until it is pale golden.

  3. Add the red pepper flakes and the shrimp and cook the mixture, stirring, for 1 minute, or until the shrimp are pink and just firm to the touch.

  4. Sprinkle the shrimp with paprika and cook the mixture, stirring, for 30 seconds.

  5. Add the sherry, boil the mixture for 30 seconds, and sprinkle with parsley.

  6. Season the mixture with lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste, and transfer it to a serving bowl.

  7. Serve at room temperature.







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