Monday, September 15, 2008

Though rooster crowing and the AC kept me awake far longer than I'd have liked, I slept in until nearly one. My International Refugee Law class, which had been at 8 PM last week was moved to 3:15 PM to accomodate everyone's schedules better. "Ugh, my class is too early," I complained teasingly to Ross who'd come back from the new campus where he'd had class at 8 AM. He has to wake up much earlier than that just to catch the bus that takes him out there.
I met up with Mallory to walk to class, which I enjoyed, but not as much as last time only because the weight of Egypt was bearing down heavily. I was suppose to go to church tonight but Maged, in what seems to be true Egyptian fashion, capriciously cancelled our plans. I didn't feel like going alone, so I returned home to mope instead of read, like I should be doing. A couple of hours passed by and I resolved to stop torturing myself. Ross having already made himself dinner, I went across the hall to ask Catherine if she wanted to accompany me in my outing to get take away. I got a salad and a tuna sandwich from Costa and the cashier did a tiny little kind thing that touched off a brightening of my whole evening. In Egypt, it's rare to find any denominations of piastres (the units into which pounds are divided, along the lines of cents being the division of dollars) smaller than 25 and usually 50 is the smallest if not a whole pound. It's hard to make change and easy to get ripped off a handful of piastres that way. Anyway, my bill was something like 30.20LE and I gave her 40. In return she gave me a 10 LE note. With a gleeful "shokran" and a smile that expressed my disproportionate happiness about this 3 penny victory, I was off back into the night to El Shabrawy, a restaurant on Nubar where Catherine was able to get some more authentically Egyptian cuisine. The cashier there was a 21-year-old Egyptian kid who was amicable and very eager to use his English on us. He thought that Catherine, who's got naturally light blonde hair and light eyes, and I were Dutch. Ha. During our lively chat, a guy who lives down the street that's in my class (that Catherine also happens to be auditing since she's working at AMERA) walked in. It was quite the little social our on Nubar.
Catherine and I headed back to our building and I ended up taking my food over to her place where we chatted for literally hours about life and religion. We compared how our impressions of Christianity have evolved over time and what it means to us. While our thoughts about the Bible diverge, it still felt nice to share a certain solidarity as people who claim the Christian faith. My social evening mitigated the frustration and loneliness I've been feeling as I wait to fall into a routine and a niche here in Cairo.

News of Egypt:
The story of an Iraqi oud-player in Cairo
Residents of the area affected by the rockslides clash with security forces over bulldozing of site
Kites in Cairo

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