Hello Everyone, I'd like to apologize if I'm going to write up a long message, but your messages and thoughts that I have been reading for the last month or so encouraged me to take this opportunity to share some of my humble thoughts with you.
I've been reading with great interest most of the messages sent on this forum. I admit (to be honest) that I came across the forum when I was searching for Egyptian ladies living abroad and what they do, but I found that the forum could be a good place to have some constructive discussions. Well, firstly, I'm an Egyptian (27 years old just in case somebody wonders) living and working mostly in Ireland, although I spend a couple of months in the UK and the US each year. I'm a design engineer for one of those major research companies.
Undoubtedly we all love Egypt, either living in it, away from it, or just visiting it for days, but I always wondered if that is really a true love, or just fascination by what Egypt offers, Shouldn't true love mean that we have to do, to the best of our abilities, whatever we can to make it a better place?. Certainly, I'm in no position to impose my thoughts or preach, but I'm just thinking out loud with you all, it seems that there is a long way to go before we can say that Egypt is a better place, and in saying better place, I mean, some aspects that are lagging way behind, I wonder every morning when we wake up, what do we think about?. Do we have some mission to live up to? or Are we just living each day to its own?, I'm no different from anyone here, I always ask the same question, but I think I always find the answer, I always want to go back to Egypt and make it a better place, and speaking for myself and my career, there is a great deal to be done, scientifcally at the least.
Rest assured that we do have some of the finest minds in the world, and just look around you if you are abroad for Egyptians in key positions, and believe me we share the same passion for this country, we always think about what we can do for her, we always wake up in the morning and dream about Egypt being the leading country in everyone's field, we always ask ourselves what does it really take to be an Egyptian?.
Thanks for your patience and I hope I didn't bore you with my less than humble thoughts.
Interesting post. But isnt true love meant to be accepting a person or a place for what it is, faults and all? Do we fall in love and set out to change what we fell in love with? Surely then it becomes something different, and we may not love it anymore. In personal relationships, do we try to change the person we love into a person we think he/she should be? And will we love that person the same if he/she is a different person? When it comes to Egypt, those of us who sadly can only visit, have fallen in love with it, warts and all. If those warts weren't there, would we love it just the same?
Posts: 1196 | From: www.spiritofthenile.com | Registered: Jun 2002
| IP: Logged |
I don't know what I can do to make Egypt better, I tell everyone here in UK what a great holiday destination it is. Show them photos, tell them of my travels, the people I have met, the friendliness and safeness.
When in Egypt, I like to give a good impression of being a nice, decent British tourist.
Thinking about what Shareen posted, I don't know if I would love Egypt without its warts and all. Imagine no caleches and taxis competing for you attention as you attempt to cross the road. Imagine not being hassled as you walk along corniche. Life isn't always rosy in Egypt I am sure but I'd swap Scotland for Egypt any day.
I love Egypt exactly as she is. Wouldn't change her.
I LOVE Egypt too...but that is for the people there....But thinking more in a way like M-X here....I do believe that the world including Egypt could need a loving hand ...just think about all the hunger, poverty and violence there is in the world..INCLUDING Egypt. If you are there as a common tourist - you do not feel it in same way, as if oyu live through i....Yes Egypt would not be the same without the caleches and falukkas and al the hazzle...BUT we should not be thinking about ourselves and what we think is enjoyable as being a tourist (WHICH I do not consider myself as anymore when I go to Egypt..as I have family there) - As humans of this world we should fight for peace, solidarity and love...and not clap the backs of the governments of the world that makes live hard and harsh for some people...like the citizens of Egypt...that day in and day out live in poverty, and fear for the police and the army...this is my thoughts...I do believe that we can make Egypt a better place and still keep the caleches and fallukas just as they are.... Let there be peace in the world and let it begin with me.....
Posts: 52 | Registered: Dec 2003
| IP: Logged |
Thanks Debbie, Shareen, wise_woman, and Aruba for your thoughtful replies, but I guess Aruba has summed up the idea, it is really different when you live in Egypt and when you visit Egypt , it has been always the case, that you will be looking for the country that you live in with a skeptical eye, for the only reason that you care so much about it and want to make it the best in the world. When you are visiting Egypt, you would like and want Egypt to be the way it is, because that what has caused the love in the first place, so Shareen's point is very well placed especially the resemblance to relationships, so if I love Shareen (just a metaphor for the sake of conversation of course), I'll love her for the way she is, but assume we have a kid, and I will definitely love my kid, Will I say, in the even t I see something not perfect with him, I love him so leave him the way he is, or Should I try to do my best to make him perfect in every aspect?. (I apologize again for my metaphor, may be I should have put it some other way).
So, wise woman, when you come to Egypt the next time and you still find all what you love but Egypt is a very developed country in exploring space for example, that will still keep the things that you have loved Egypt for, I'm sure they will not go, never.
I won't dive into more details, but we have been always accused as Egyptians of "talking a lot and do little", we have to move to practical steps, I know I'm being hypothetical here, but let's just think now, this moment, what everyone could do to help ourselves and our great country. There is no forum or discussion that could bring that to our lives, I think we should have to look into ourselves for an answer, and that actually doesn't apply to me or Egyptians, but I think it might apply well to every human being, again no preaching here, just pure thoughts I'd like to share, probably if I keep writing, I'll have to fill a couple of pages, but thanks again for your replies, Debbie, Shareen (with apologies), wise_woman and Aruba.
Lol Malc.... no apologies needed for me... I am not even sure what you are apologising for. My post was general, and I agree there are things that would make Egypt a nicer place, but that is the same of any country in the world. I am, sadly, only a visitor to Egypt, but I have experienced the life of the less well off, and there are huge improvements which could be made. But that is only by my western standards on a material level. But what they have on a personal level far exceeds any quality of life which can be gained through material things. A long and complex subject I think, with many debates on both sides. And I am afraid I can see both sides. Maybe the egyptians and the expats living in Egypt should be the ones to debate this.
Posts: 1196 | From: www.spiritofthenile.com | Registered: Jun 2002
| IP: Logged |
Thanks for the very informative message. I'll take your thoughts on board. My messages have been open thinking to share with you and all the others, and I think it is coming to an end, but I'm glad for all the great replies that I had, and I hope I've added something to your thoughts.
I have only lived in Egypt for 5 months but have visited since 1979.
I wouldn't like to impose my standards of what is 'better' on Egypt. You see when you look at the West and how society is and compare it to Egypt then I wonder who exactly has got it right.
By 'improving' it could you also destroy it. What is an improvement anyway. You caould have fast effieceint roads so you could dash from one destination to another is the quickest time. Is that an improvement or is a society that can live with out getting from A to B in the fastest time an improved one anyway.
My contribution. I try and give opportunity to people. My little enterprise is trying to bring tourists to the ordinary Egyptians and giving them a chance to get the dollars instead of the big tour companies.
One of the things I feel is that by bringing tourists to the West Bank then the whole community benefits and although I want my particular family to benefit I don't mind as long as it is someone on the West Bank instead of a big foreign owned tour company. It is difficult to get the people here to have that attitude and that is one thing I would personally like to see change but it is their right. It is the way they have always been and I do not have the right to impose my beleifs on them
Thanks for your reply. I really liked your ideas, it shows a lot of caring about the people of this country. Although, I'm still standing by my point , but I clearly see where you are coming from, and I think it is again different prespectives from those who have been living in Egypt all their lives and those who have visited it. There is this fine thin line that divides both prespectives, but I nevertheless respect your comments.
I do agree that there is no reason to change the way of "life" in Egypt from the touristic point of view....And neither do I believe that the Egyptians themselves need fast trains or a westerns society in that matter of getting fast from one point to another...This is not what it is about....BUT what it is about and what I understand from M-X is the general way that the government, police and military treat the civilians of Egypt....You will not feel this in the same way if you are just a tourist...or even if you are just living in Egypt as a foreigner unless you get close to the way things actually are down there... There is so much corruption in this country with suppres the Egyptians...they are afraid of walking on the street as any moment they might be stopped by the police to show their ID...And if they are not lucky the police might arrest them "just because they don't like their face"....What is this is this humanity ?? Is this justice towards the Egyptians ?? It is a common fact, that if you have money in Egypt...as an Egyptian you wil always find a way out of these trouble..:If you happend to even find yourself in this trouble..But if you have no money or do not have contact with "higher" peope of "higher" status then yo can find yourself locked up n prison for a long time for a "crime" that you have not even done. This is what I think is dreadfull about Egypt.. The people of Egypt...the civilians...I love them...I love the society between them...how friendly they are...how much a family stands together and all the good things you can find about them...But the government...the police and the military..THIS IS what NEEDS to be changed...to make a more secure future for the Egyptians and also for tourist Thats what I have to say at the moment...
Despite all those ugly facts, there seems to be things that we cannot change with our own hands, for many reasons, and if we keep complaining about them, we will go nowhere as well, so although I'm not sure how those things are going to vanish, but it seems that the government is trying harder to alleviate some of those dreadful situations. I'm mopre implying things that we can physically change and that we could now at this time, at this moment, things that we might have neglected to do for this country for a long time, and because I'm an engineering person so that's the best thing that I can talk about, there is a lot to be done.
I do agree with your views, but unfortunately there is very little I personally can do, so there are people out there who are more experienced and who can do that with the help of the government which is more opening now for people's opinions, but I'd like to do my bit in engineering and bring the best that I have to Egypt, and by the way there are a lot of initiatives in this area that is gaining worldwide recognition, and all in all that's a very positive sign, and the future is bright
As a parting note, I'm in no position to talk about politics, but if you look at other countries now even in Europe after recent events, you could still get arrested and questioned until you prove innocent,but to what extent, I don't really know.
Lol M-X...thanks for the comment on my name It is actually a name that comes from an interesting story with the police in Egypt ....this is why I have a "great" experience of how the police treat the Egyptians...and sometimes also tourist.
Well I do agree that we can't change the government of Egypt or the police or the military just like that and especially not over the internet But I do think that it is an important issue no matter where in the world you look....And I do agree with you that it could happend in others countries also...But as we were talking about Egypt..i stuck to Egypt
And Monica....yes it could be right that there is going to be a change in the president...but as far as I know..the next president will be Mombarak's son..So that will not change much for the comman Egyptians unfortunately. And yes...sometimes the police act the way they do because they need money...sometimes they act this wa because they enjoy stepping on the poor people and have their power over them...torture them and treat them worse than animals....And sometimes they act because their actually have been a crime..and then they should act..But there is a line of when, where and how they shold arrest people and how they should treat them in the prison..... The government in my eyes seems more interested in the outside world than in Egypt itself...unless when you happend to have a lot of money or good ideas that can bring money to the country...So M-X maybe this is your way up to change evething in Egypt..Bring your engineering to Egypt on a different point of view than it normally is there...then maybe you will be an influence rich person there that can work from the top to change Egypt to the better in all points of views But just make sure that you keep the caleches and fallukas there ...lol
[This message has been edited by Aruba (edited 10 January 2004).]