If you think what I had already said about the changes in Marina is bad enough, wait till you check this out.
Spending the summer in the same place where the elite and the richest of the Egyptian society spend their vacation sure has its advantages. There's good security, especially where the ministers' villas are located. (I wonder how ministers in our government can manage to afford those fancy villas at the most privileged spot in Marina! It's a mystery if you don't have any bad intentions.) There are all the facilities that you can dream of. It's like Cairo has transferred itself to follow you there. You will find lots of supermarkets, pharmacies, restaurants, coffee shops, cinemas, you name it. And all shops offer to deliver their goods to your door, a service that became a necessity now after the resort became so crowded. Now, you can't even find a place to park your car just for minutes to order a sandwich to go.
A very funny and common scene was to find a group of young guys wanting to hitchhike. You always find them after midnight, they are guys who are too young to drive, or let's say whose parents still have the wisdom not to allow them to drive (many accidents used to take place because of underage driving). They just keep waving their thumbs and giving you the look if you refuse to stop. I believe the only thing that this resort misses in its current mess is to have cabs to bring those boys back to their homes.
Yet, the presence of security and traffic policemen is strongly felt. At night they will usually stop you to see your driving license, which is great. I wish they are serious about it with everybody, for we didn't try to show them money instead. The outer gates which lead you to the different parts are not all the same when it comes to security measures. Some gates are easier to access than others. For that sake, they made a new system this year, which is that they issue cards to those who own a place there. But they didn't say anything about it, till they already started working by it! We were almost going crazy. We got nothing against the idea, although it doesn't solve the problem for those who rent or those who come from Alexandria for a day use. We only wondered why on earth they didn't give any instructions as to how and where to issue those cards, before they actually stop you to ask about them. Even their stupid magazine didn't mention anything about it. And when you say, I don't have it, security guys look at you as if you are suspicious. You need to yell in order to let them open those gates. They can never show any sign of understanding before they make you reach the yelling phase.
As if this was not bad enough, they inserted inner gates which separate one part from the other internally. Which means that, if you live in Marina 4 and you decide to go to Marina 3, you must get trapped. You will have to pass through one of those ridiculous inner gates, and find a guy who asks you to pay money to pass cause you don't have your card! What on earth?! Are those people nuts? Is this the way to treat families going on vacations? Why didn’t they tell us about those damn cards when we first arrived? Why didn't they announce by any means? Why causing all of this embarrassment and unneeded humiliation to people who did nothing wrong, except deciding to use their summer houses for vacation? Do I have to beg the guard and swear by God that I do have a house there in order to move a few meters away from where I live? I just can't get it.
And what's that thing about the money? Am I traveling? What good will the money do them if I don't have a place there? I'm an intruder who got the few pounds they want, so what? Or worse, what if there is a terrorist who will hand them those miserable pounds in order to blow the whole thing up? What will the money do?
Do they need donations, for instance? Are they in need for more financial resources? If that's the case, why not collect this money in a decent way? Or is it just for fun, to annoy those people who dream about having fun in the sun and all? May be they thought we had no right to do so, saying to themselves "Oh, those vacationers think they've escaped the city and its hellish life, hahaha, let's torture them a bit here in order to remind them of their usual suffering. Yeah, let's surprise them with new rules and everything, and punish them for not following those rules." I fail to find any rational reason behind this pathetic money collecting thing. Can you?