Soul Of America






Orlando and Candice Archie

moved to Luxor, Egypt

 in Fall 2009.

Filmmakers, musicians, and

former teachers in the USA,

they currently home school

their five children. 

They are soaking up the 

sights and sounds of the

ancient metropolis 

and gathering research

for their coming book,

In Health: Practical

uses of Temples in

Modern and Ancient Egypt


Candice Archie visits Karnak Temple in Luxor, Egypt

 credit Candice Archie





by Candice and Orlando Archie


   Everyone thought we were insane. Moving to Egypt with five children? What would we do about school? How would we deal with being away from family and friends for so long?  How would we deal with the culture shock of being non-Muslims living in a predominately Islamic and Arab society?


A typical street scene in Luxor

 credit Candice Archie


   All of these questions had been tossed back and forth between me and my husband for months. We also wondered how the ancient culture of Kemet, an older name for Egypt, would juxtapose alongside the living Arabic culture. Putting aside the normal worries and fears that go along with traveling to faraway places unknown and unseen; we made the journey to Luxor and have never looked back.

A friendly donkey ride for the Archie Family kids
credit Candice Archie

    Upon arrival, we found that Egyptians are not used to encountering many Americans, let alone Black Americans. Everywhere we go, the locals are happy and surprised to see us. “OBAMA!” is what you will hear shouted at you with joy as you wander the streets and temples. Egyptians and other foreigners as well view his presidency through a lens of hope and wonder. We also are greeted with the heartwarming phrase “Welcome Back!” on occasion. Every time we hear this, we know that we made the right choice.

    The food in Luxor is fresh, inexpensive and delicious. Everything is sold and served in season, and there are no chemicals or hormones added to any of the fruits, vegetables, meats or poultry. No matter what your dietary preference, whether it is vegetarian, vegan or meat lover: you will find plenty of choices to satisfy your hunger.

A Luxor grocer weighing fresh fruits of the day
credit Candice Archie
    Renting a flat or villa is also a cheap and relatively painless venture. Though not as strong as in years past, the U.S. dollar still stretches a long way in Egypt. On the East Bank of Luxor, also known as Thebes, there exists more of an urban flair. You will find yourself living within proximity to the grand temple of Luxor and the breathtaking temple of Karnak. If you desire a quieter and more rural lifestyle, you may want to try the West Bank of the Nile where many British ex-pats live, the home of the Valley of the Kings and Queens.

One of several Pharoah statues in Karnak

credit Candice Archie

    Jaw dropping, Karnak Temple contains a number of founding temples to Pharoah Amun some 4000 years ago. Afterwards, most pharoahs contributed parts to the complex, enhancing it to become a more diverse timeline reflection of Kemet culture. Since Karnak Temple is located in a Luxor suburban site surrounded by trees and gardens and walking distance from a train station, it one of Egypt's most accessible and popular living antiquity museums of temples, halls and statues.

    Near Karnak, the longest and most fabled river in history, the Nile River, runs through the city of Luxor. Whether it be sunrise or sunset, it is indeed a beautiful and serene sight to behold. Nubian boatmen offer rides for a reasonable price on their traditional style sailboats called feluccas. If boating isn’t for you, then there is always the option of a stroll along the “Cornice El-Nil” that follows the glittering and ancient river throughout the town.

Sentries guarding Karnak Temple
credit Candice Archie


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