Also, we went on a tour of the dunes and salt flats and the guide started his jeep with a flathead screwdriver. That was a culture shock for my 12yo american kid self.
Oddly enough, there was a plan to flood the Qattara Depression with Mediterranean seawater to bring rain to the Sahara. It involved the use of hydrogen bombs:
> In the 1970s and early 1980s, several proposals to flood the area were made by Friedrich Bassler and the Joint Venture Qattara, a group of mainly German companies. They wanted to make use of peaceful nuclear explosions to construct a tunnel, drastically reducing construction costs compared to conventional methods. This project proposed to use 213 H-bombs, with yields of one to 1.5 megatons, detonated at depths of 100 to 500 metres (330 to 1,640 ft). That fitted within the Atoms for Peace program proposed by US President Dwight Eisenhower in 1953. The Egyptian government turned down the idea.