Thursday, June 3, 2010

Ah ah ah ah, Stayin' Alive!

Jet lag is wicked tough. I left my apartment in Virginia at approximately 7 AM on Friday and 5 states, 2 countries, and 1 ocean later, I arrived at the Heiss' apartment just after 2 PM on Saturday.

Needless to say, I was tired. I had even managed to doze off in the cab, waking up just in time to discover that my driver wasn't entirely sure where to go. Fortunately, he wasn't afraid to ask for directions and we eventually made it.

As tired as I was, I was excited to get up and go. After hugs, a tour of the apartment, and a much needed shower, we were off to meet friends from the Cairo branch for a felucca ride on the Nile. Heissatopia account of our outing here.

We enjoyed koshary and fayrouz for dinner while the adults talked, the kids played, and I took in the scenery and maybe dozed a little behind my sunglasses.

It was a beautiful evening, though I was a little disappointed that I didn't spy any crocodiles in the river.

We chose to walk home via Road 9, but we had to cross the korniche first, a street with at least 3-5 lanes of traffic at a time.

There are three things you need to go out in Cairene traffic: 1) a direction, 2) keen attention to everyone around you, and 3) a sincere prayer for your safety. Lights, lane markers, and other things we Americans are used to are not as important there.

Lacking number 2 due to fatigue, I misjudged the speed of the oncoming traffic I had followed Andrew into and was woken right up as two cars went speeding past me on either side. I pulled my arms in tight and tried to make myself as small as possible and managed to live to tell the tale.

That was my first and only real brush with mortality on the whole trip, as I kept my focus sharp any other time we were out, and didn't trust Andrew to always be successful in leading the way. I didn't want to be one of the 8000 people that will die in Cairo this year because of traffic accidents.

Life is too good to end it by being squished on the streets of a foreign country!

1 comment:

Giggles said...

Lanes are only a suggestion in Brasil too. When they have lanes it's because they are trying to line people up for speed photos. Otherwise there aren't really lanes.

The Nile looks lovely!