Follow up

Just to make things clear, when I wrote that previous post, I was doing nothing but venting my frustration. Next thing you know, I have like numerous ideas, suggestions and offers- ranging from the absured, funny, creepy to the incredibly generous- from the world over. I would like to thank you all for them. I had no idea how many options I have. It's good to have options. Makes one feel better.

So yeah, Thank you very much, especially to those who sent me e-mails. I am definately replying to y'all today!

Leave Egypt, to where exactly?

I received lots of e-mails and comments asking me to leave Egypt after the Abdel Karim sentencing. Ehh, ok, to where exactly? To the US, where the employers and the immigration laws are inventing new ways every day to fuck me over? To Canada or Australia, where any application for immigration would cost money I don't have and at least one year in waiting time? Or should I go for a gulf country, where alcohol, or youtube and flickr are banned? Where to go people?  Any ideas? I am open for any realistic ones. And no, going to Mexico, crossing the border and then telling the police if they catch me that my name is Javier is not a realistic solution.

Any suggestions? 

The family is allright

So, after my dad was done with his operation, my mom ends up falling on her face and gets torn ligements in her arm and leg. This meant that being the good son that I am I had to check up on both him and her, which sucks because they were in 2 totally opposite neighbourhoods, each at one edge of cairo. This is why I have been lite-blogging. Sorry, but family comes first!

B ut anyway, it's all over now, and all is well. Thanks for your prayers!

My dad is in surgery today

Nothing too serious, but needless to say there will be no blogging today and possibly tomorrow!

Just figured y'all should know! 

Update: Thanks for all of you wishing my father well. He is doing fine. I just came back from the hospital and resting a bit since I will be heading back to spend the night there. In the mean time, there are 2 items that I saw that I feel that I need to blog desperately!

What My Birthday means

***Your Birthdate: May 21***

You're a restless rebel with an unpredictable nature.

Bright but unbridled, you tend to seek out wild experiences over new ideas.

People are frustrated by your great potential, but you love your unconventional life.

You're a heartbreaker. People get attached to you, and then you're gone.

Your strength: Your thirst for adventure

Your weakness: Not taking time for slow pleasures

Your power color: Hot pink

Your power symbol: Figure eight

Your power month: March

What Does Your Birth Date Mean?

http://www.blogthings.com/whatdoesyourbirthdatemeanquiz/

Hot Pink? HOT PINK?

What a bunch of bullshit! 

5 positive things about having the flu

1) You finally get the rest you really want, without anyone accusing you of being the lazy bum you are.

2) People leave you the fuck alone. And they don't say shit about u not getting out of Your Pj's for 2 days!

3) Egyptian cold & flu medicine. 25% alcohol and other narcotics mixed with artifical sweetner. Yummy!

4) You have a good excuse not to write on your blog, because you are too ashamed to admit to having writer's block.

5) Fearing infection, Your annoying aunt covers her nose whenever you pass her by. So you take advanatge of the stiuation and follow her around the house, hoping to see how long she can hold her breath before passing out. You know you are being mean, but fuck it, you are sick. Plus, if you were really mean, you would've gone for a hug, now wouldn't you?

I am back ..again

Yes, I am here again, kinda!

I know it's been a while now, but trust me, it wasn't a vacation. I have the physical and mental bruises to prove it. Let's jusy say that I was reminded, yet again, that you can not try to do something in this country without getting punished for it by the authorities or the people. There was a fatal car accident where people died, a miscarriage, Police harrassment, corruption, redicilous amounts of alcohol, Beatrayals, friendships probably forever strained, a dirty underground war utilizing bouncers and bribes and a group of people who literally fell apart by the end of the week from the insane amount of pressure they got placed under. Sure, there was fun and it was had by all, but goddamn it, I am just not sure it was worth it.

The experience has left me numb for now. Maybe I will tell the story later. Probably not. Who knows?

All I want to do now is to forget about it all.

Maybe I will escape through blogging.

Yep, sounds like a plan! 

Salvation assists Destruction

I read daniel’s post today, and it broke my heart!

It broke my heart because I can see myself writing it one day. I can see other bloggers I know from many different countries writing it as well. You just have to change the name of the country to your respective country and, Presto, you are there. Sure, here we don’t have chavistas, but we have the MB here, and their influence is causing so many people to leave, which can also be said about Hezbollah in Lebanon, the various militias in Iraq, and the list goes on and on.

I remember once reading about the encounter between Our super asshole ex-president Nasser and the supreme socialist scumbag Che Guevara and how Che asked him about the number of egyptians who left the country en masse after his land and property “reforms”. Nasser responded to Che’s question by saying that no giant exodus took place, and that the people stayed. This surprised Guevara, who informed Nasser that his “reforms” must not be successfull, for the degree of a revolution’s success is only measured by the amount of people who end up leaving the country because of it, feeling that this new revolutionized society is one where they just couldn’t live in. Only when the country becomes unliveable for those the reforms has as its victims, then and only then are they successfull.

I keep thinking of that whenever I think about this country, and how this day has arrived for the many many egyptians linning up in front of the canadian and american embassies, and how more will surely come. And those following paragraphs haunt me for it:

Tonight I also feel strangely liberated because all my obligations
toward Venezuela have ceased. I do not need to worry anymore about its
future. There is no role for me in that future. The battles to come
will be fought by different people, for different reasons and my advice
will be laughed at. The battles to come are not my battles anymore. I
have been left on the wayside by a people who has decided to entrust
its fate unto a single man, deranged, egotistic, uncompromising,
blustery, disrespectful, amoral. People who value that have no business
talking to me except to make sure that I shut up, that I stay quiet,
that I never remind them of their emptiness.

But it is fine with
me. Really, I am the better for it. During four years I have tried to
deliver a consistent message of ethos and culture, of gentility and
passion. There is nothing I can say today that will not be a repeat of
what I have written in the past 4 years. It is time to move one, to go
to new ventures. For four years I have sacrificed so much to pass a
message. So many hours spent at a computer, so many friends ignored, so
many obligations disdained. It is time that I regroup some. The new
Venezuela has nothing to offer to me and yet it is my country and I
will not leave it. Tonight more than ever I understand the ending of
Dr. Zhivago. I am Yuri Zhivago tonight. I just need to change my life,
isolate myself from all the degradations that will come to Venezuela as
the incompetence of Chavez will have now free rein to finish off
historical monuments, National Parks, customs, culture, traditions. Now
I need to nest, to bring out all the books that I have bought over the
years and never had time to read, to start listening to music again as
I forget about the news.

It is not that Chavez has beaten me, he
just has convinced me that I need to lead a parallel life, with select
and trustful friends, and forget about the dreariness of the coming
Venezuela, where streets will be named for obscure assassins, where
buhoneros will rule the cities, where nature will become too dangerous
with crime and pollution to visit. We will gather in small groups,
reminisce, rebuild in our imaginations a gentle Venezuela that could
have been.

We already do that here!

I don’t want to think about it. Sometimes I don’t want to think anymore at all. Oh how I envy those bastards who live in the middle of nowhere and do nothing but farm lands and only worry about what to eat and what they will do the next day, and who can’t name a single foriegn president and can’t point any country out in a map. How I envy my auc-ian friends, those usefull idiots who do nothing all day but talk about cars, haircuts, gossip and who appeared in what magazine. How I envy those who just don’t care, who tell you point blank that they never discuss politics or religion, because it will just upset them. I wish I could do that. To just not care anymore. That would be so nice. I can’t wait for that day to come.

The day has arrived for Daniel, and I hope he is a happier person for it, even though I doubt it. That day will come for me as well, and for many people I know who also care and try to chnage things despite the nagging knowledge they have that they are powerless. It will be a liberating, yet very sad day. And as much as I long for the salvation of apathy, I fear the day I recieve it, for that will mean that a good part, a decent part, in me has died, and that the people I fought against are the ones who managed to kill it….

…and that I allowed them to do that.

A Pharaoh’s last Joruney

It’s Ramses last night in his Square. He is about to be moved for a nicer, less polluted location. You decide that you won’t miss it. You and your friends talk about it, and you deciude to take the Journey together.

The Bridge was awfully crowded, even though it was 12:30 am on a Friday. The reason? People have parked their cars on the bridge and stood out to watch the moving of Ramses. You contemplate doing the same thing those assholes did, but you know better, and you decide to go park the car and try to get their legitimately without messing up Cairo’s traffic.

You park the park at the Ramses Hilton parking garage, and you realize for the first time how weird it is that they named it the Ramses Hilton, when it’s a good 2 miles away from the actual square. You ignore such thoughts. You start worrying about how you are going to get there. There won’t be a single Taxi that will take you and your friend. You decide that the best way to get there is to walk it. Sure, it’s a long hike, but it would be faster than taking any car. So you get on with it.

The actual walk is very close to a religious experience. Here you are walking with a prupose, braving the heat, the humidity, the cars, the egyptian public and other unpleasantness on your little quest to say your Farewell to the Statue of the last great Pharaoh. It’s almost like a Funeral, and you are there to pay your last respects and say goodbye. There seem to be others that share your sentiments. When you ask someone if this is the way to the Ramses statue, he tell you that it is, but not for long, and urges you to hurry up and get there. And you increase your pace. You realize that You are close because people are everywhere and its getting crowded.

This is what You hear:

“Ramses is leaving. They say he doesn’t like the pollution and the dust, so he too is moving to the suburbs!”

“I don’t understand. All of this Hooplah for a false Idol? What is wrong with those people?”

” This is an Idol you Kafarah”

“Even if it’s a great statue, God is greater!”

Your Blood pressure rises, and you feel like killing some people until you find this old man crying and saying: ” For 50 years I have passed by this sqaure, and he (the statue) was there. He was Egypt to me. And now, even he is gone. I don’t know what I will do when I pass by this square tomorrow and not find him standing there”, and your heart goes out to him immedietly. But you take the mental note that this is an old man. He came from a different era. Before Wahhabism mindfucked Egyptians. The man is our past, the hateful idiots are our future.

You position Yourself in a location that allows you to snap pictures, and its hard since you have a girl with you, an unveiled one at that, and you have to make sure that the egyptian crowds don’t get to have the freedom to exercise their favorite pasttime of groping unveiled western dressed girls. The staring is bad enough as it is. And then Ramses arrives.

The People start pushing. They all want a better look. Some guys point that the foreigners were allowed to walk infront of it and take pictures, while the egyptians had to stand behind Police barracades. Others were urging the guys infront of it to not carry their children on top of their shoulders so we can see. One guy was following Ramses through my camera, and he would be like “Can you zoom a little bit? Don’t zoom out yet. This is good. Take a picture now!”. And I would. Guy had a good eye.

There were people chanting “Allahu Akbar” and waving V for Victory signs. Why? I have no idea. There was Jubilation in the air. The people sensed that they were particpating in an event. I am just not sure that they understood the significance of said event. So they acted the only way they know how to act: Cracked Jokes, chanted Allahu Akbar and flashed V signs. Was it a Victory that the Statue had to be removed cause of the pollution? Was it a Victory that the False Idol was gone? Or was it a Victory that we were actually doing this? That we were managing to actually do this on our own? Move such a Huge Statue without messing it up? You remember that this is a country surrounded by incomptence, so you understand that the people will take any victory they could get.

And Ramses finally moves away. Some Egyptian dude screams “GOOOOOOOOOOOODBYEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!”, and you can’t help but smile sadly that it’s over.

You decide to take a cab on your way back, and the young cab driver decides to start a conversation with you about it, and he-word for word- echoes the same sentiments you heard earlier on that night.

CD: “Why are all of those people out  here? All of this for a (Sanam) False Idol. Go back home, people!”

You: “Well, don’t call it a Sanam. It is part of our heritage, and has been a huge part of our Daily Life. And now, it’s gone. The government is moving it away.”

CD: “Well, if this country had real men, they wouldn;t have waited for the Government to remove it. They would’ve removed it years ago themselves!”

You decide to keep your mouth shut, and before you get out, he decides to give you one last pearl of wisdom.

CD: “You know, I am feeling sad. Not because they are removing the Statue, but because you are sad that they are removing the statue.”

You feel like responding that you feel sad that he is the future of your country, but you decide to nod your head and just give him his money. Some battles are just not worth fighting.

Farewell Ramses. May you, one day, find yourself  in a country whose people will appreciate you and what you represent.