Not a stupid question at all! I'm no expert either but perhaps I can add something to petergoose's comments?
There certainly were a number of servants who accompanied the Nile Expedition. The medal roll lists five civilian servants to HQ Staff members like General Wolseley, General Earle, Colonel Blundell, etc. but none of these seem to have gone with the Desert Column. However, a number of the soldiers in the Column acted as servants to senior regimental officers. For example, 638 Trooper D. Gilligan of the 2nd Life Guards, serving with the Heavy Camel Regiment, was servant to Major the Earl of Dundonald and actually fought at Abu Klea.
Lest we imagine these same officers sipping iced drinks whilst being fanned by an attentive batman, nothing could be further from the truth. On active service, or even peacetime exercises, a good officer is preoccupied with performing his unit's duties as well as keeping an eye on the welfare of others. With Orders Groups, Recce's, etc. he ( or she ) will have little or no time to grab a sandwich or locate a sheltered spot to doss down for a snatched 15 minutes of sleep. Another person, able to look after the commander's meagre creature comforts, can make an enormous difference in the outcome of operations. The social order of 1884 probably also dictated that a senior officer need not wash his own socks, 'though many probably did!
Regarding the presence of " natives, " why the Desert Column could probably never have made it without them! They provided the guides, interpreters, drivers, etc. that kept the Column mounted and mobile, albeit with different degrees of success. If I thought that Mike Snook was reading this then I would also mention how the 8 Egyptian artillerymen in the Column were the real brains behind the operation and largely responsible for the victory at Abu Klea ... but I won't.