Change Yourself…Change The World.


Chillaxing in Cairo
July 24, 2010, 5:53 pm
Filed under: Egypt

Felucca ride on the Nile River at sunset.

Dearest friends,

Today was a pretty low-key day. I’m still getting my head back into traveling, and I was feeling some small presentiments of culture shock this morning; so rather than high-tailing it out into the intense heat and dust and exacerbating this intuition, I laid low this morning in my hostel and enjoyed the air conditioning and free wi-fi.

In the late afternoon, I ventured out to the expat area of Cairo, Maadi, which houses a lot of Western style restaurants (such as TGI Fridays), and lays right along the Nile River. I went to meet a friend of a friend named Ian, who’s been working in Cairo for the past six weeks. He arranged for a felucca ride on the Nile River (a wooden boat) during the sun set, which was absolutely gorgeous and exactly what I needed after a few days in the chaotic city of Cairo. It was also SO COOL to be on the NILE RIVER! I reached down and splashed the water out of delight, and Ian warned me about swimming in this area of the Nile (which prompted me to tell him THIS story…)  He also brought along an amazing breadth of traditional Egyptian food, which was delicious (none that I can pronounce, but I wish I had the recipes to). We chilled on the felucca for a good two hours, drinking beer, eating Egyptian cuisine, and talking intensely about international development and environmentalism, which is a field he’s grown up around. Afterwards we headed over to the house that he’s living at for the summer in the expat area of Cairo, which was really interesting to see. Finally, we went back into the downtown area and drank tea (no, not traditional Egyptian tea, mine was Lipton. What a sham!) and smoked shisha, while discussing micro-finance, local Egyptian customs, USAID, The World Bank, more international environmentalism, and the entire field of aid. It was a really enjoyable way to end my excursions in Cairo. Thanks for the great night and conversation Ian!

Tomorrow I plan to romp a bit around Khan el-Khalili (the large bazaar in Cairo) again to shamelessly buy some trinkets for friends and family, before heading off to Jordan! Cairo was a fantastic experience, and I hope to come back to Egypt someday to gain more insight into the country’s culture, and visit other various sights and cities.

One more thing: since I spent the vast majority of my time today in a storm of frustration, writing and re-writing THIS page, definitely check it out so that I can feel like it was worthwhile!

That’s all folks! Until Jordan,

Brittany


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