Browns out of blues. The boat ride across to philae island was short and breathtaking. The scoured stones triggered a bit of geography memory (enough to remind me i now have none). The tourist hordes of other temples was absent, though it could have just been that it was lunchtime. Philae sits near the tropic of cancer. Apparently this gives gorgeous contrasts of light and shade as the sun reaches its highest altitude. We went without a guide for the philae temple; it made sense, flowers and deep waters all around, it’s easy to feel caught in the sense of peace at the temple of isis.
It took a while for me to realise some reliefs were defaced by man, and not time. Where the early christians were, turning it into their chapel, then when the muslims came.
Later, the nubian museum taught us that philae temple had been moved, piece by mega piece, to this island with the building of the aswan dam. The exhibit alone made the museum trip worthwhile. The reconstruction effort basically looked like a hand of god plucked up the old temple complex and moved it, perfection, to higher ground.
Even later, i read that the nubian population was effectively stripped landless when their villages were also relocated with the flooding.
Napoleon’s nice square of graffiti sits at the entrance. Soldiers marked names on other walls alongside ancient script.
Under the quiet lay plenty of scars left, each marking their own before withering away with time.