With all the mayhem thats been happening in Egypt of suicide bombings and hundreds of people being sentenced to death, I thought it was the right time to reflect on what I love so much about this country.
- The sunshine. Of course the first point had to be about the weather. No longer do you need to check the weather report continuously, as every single day is guaranteed sunshine. The number of days that it rains here you can count on one hand. I feel like I am on a permanent vacation, and thats got to be a good thing.
- The people. You tend to hear bad experiences about how the slimy taxi driver ripped them off with his dodgy meter, queue jumping rife with people thinking its their right to push in and the mountain of rubbish left on every street corner. Sure all of that happens, but let me tell you what I love about the Egyptians. I love the fact that theres a community spirit amongst the locals where you can walk down the street and say hello to the bawab (doorman) or the Imam from the mosque down the road. I love how the guy in my local grocery shop always gives my daughter a banana and before I can fully peel it, she grabs it with her fat hands and gulps it down in a matter of seconds. How the Imam at the mosque likes to rock my daughter in a chair and recite Quran to her whilst she sits mesmerised. Also how there is no shortage of people willing to help you with directions, even if they happen to be directing you the wrong way!
- The fact that the country is family friendly. Where else in the world can you go out at 1am and see families with young children sitting in a cafe or restaurant? You might be thinking isn’t it past their bedtime? or what are they even doing out at such a late hour, normally reserved for pimps, drunks and night owls? The answer is that in Egypt family comes first, and with people marrying younger and having a football team of kids, don’t expect it to change anytime soon.
I also love how people adore children. In the UK you feel scared and intimidated by others if your child so dares as cry on any form of public transport or even in a restaurant. The fact that crying to a baby is as natural as breathing, is irrelevant to most. Expect evil stares and tutting. But in Egypt I find that people want to hold your child, play with them and genuinely look like they care.
- Lack of rules. Sure, the fact that there seems to be no order in Egypt can really hack you off, but coming from a country that is so anal about following rules and always being politically correct you loose a sense of freedom. I do like some order to a society, but please, the day when a school can get sued because a child tripped up in the playground and scratched themselves, theres obviously something wrong there.
- Water fountains dotted along the streets. With the weather being so hot (it was 39 degrees celsius today), It is the best thing when you see one of these and drench your face in the ice cold water. Heaven
To be honest, I could go on and on…