”Mr Moustache” (March 2012)

This was the most common way I was greeted by the hawkers outside every tourist attraction, from Luxor to Aswan.

What happened after that, varied with every encounter.

They have all developed their individual ways of trying to separate you from your money.

Some are humorous and charming, while others are persistent and annoying.

A bit like being tied to a chair and forced to watch thirty minutes non stop of Harvey Norman ads.

What is also common to the hawkers, is the unwavering optimism they have, that they will make a sale and it will be from you.

This optimism turns from frustration to desperation as the backside of last tourist disappears up the steps of the tour bus.

I think we are all over the constant hassle but it’s easy forget that this is how they put falafel on the table.

And with tourism running at about 62% of what it was before the revolution, their desperation is understandable.

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