September 28, 2009

Cairo: Egypt’s Future

It’s been over a year since I had the privilege to visit Cairo. The past week’s events have prompted me to share. I have to say that I barely scratched the surface of Cairo, but what I felt was a city full of energy, with nowhere to put it.

Lots of young, smart and educated people with no place to put their intellect to good use. Our two guides were no exception. Both, full of energy and running out of time to use it. Like all of us, I suppose, but they had alot less options.

Mount Sinai, Egypt (click image to’s a stunning shot)
Egypt is a land of stunning beauty...

...contrasted against an ancient past.

...With people friendly, beautiful people who were more than happy to interact with us.

However, I figure in an land like Egypt, you have to be sharp witted and on your toes all the time. There is no safety net. If you don’t have your sh*t together, you are going to get cast out, or worse.

That’s a tremendous amount of pressure on the young. The young who see the world passing them by.

It seemed like one generation was imprisoned by the past, while the young generation was struggling with the realities of the current situation. The young seemed as though they were being shackled to a world that was dragging them into the past.

That seemed like a dangerous situation to me. I know I would not stand for it. I am not sure, but there must be a way to throw out the bad, while keeping the good...but Egypt is an ancient land. Very ancient.

So, I have a question: if Egypt is an ancient land and possibly the root of our Western Civilization, isn’t it really our future as well?

Only time will tell...the next generation of Egyptians will have to decide that for us.

I must say, though, Cairo was a pleasant city to stroll through at night. Even more so, since we happened to be there during Ramadan.

It was quite oppressive during the day. One, the heat was unbearable, especially at noon. Two, because you could not eat food or drink water from sunrise to sunset. This had to be torture for all those women draped in black burqas under the midday desert sun...we could hear lots of fights break out at about 3:00pm...

...But what a relief after really, really tasted good by then!

And relaxing with a cup of sweet tea was never so satisfying!

I look forward to the future Egypt that the younger generation now has the permission to build.


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