Khartoum

The Lonely Planet Guide describes Khartoum as a “boisterous, modern, flashy city with an ever increasing number of glass tower blocks” well the last bit is true.

The Sudan Club which I remember from my childhood is long gone and is now the Ministry of Foreign Affairs…(there are literally hundreds including the Ministry for Ministers and a ministry for the Chamber of Ministers.) The swimming pool and half the gardens are now the sight of a bridge across the Nile. The Blue Nile Sailing club home to Kitcheners gunboat the Melik

is still running and I suspect completely unchanged over the last 40 years ( The loos certainly haven’t been updated…. or cleaned )
I asked at the 5 star Burj al Fateh hotel what we should see if we had a spare day in town and the receptionist said, with a lovely smile, there is nothing to see. Not quite true but the sentiment was right. The Mahdis tomb

the Khalifa’s house the confluence of the Blue and white Niles and the Omdurman souq were all done in a day.
Our tourism was completed when we found the Bugger Specialised Hospital.

We had breakfast at the Acropol hotel who found George to mend our fridge, which couldn’t stand the desert heat and now has twin cooling fans from a computer!
After a couple of days at the sailing club we were luck enough to be invited round to friends for dinner, the use of their washing machine and an air conditioned bedroom. Thank you Chris. The small world syndrome kicked in on our return to the sailing club when a very tall ( too fat to be a Dinka) English man called Adam walked over to our van and said “yes I do know Colin, he’s stuck in a meeting but will be down later” sure enough Colin appeared, I was in the army with him and he is here on a 6 month UN tour and had heard through the grapevine that we were in town!

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