Posted by: nastypen | December 19, 2008

Let Me Unload the Negativity First

Let me just say this, Cairo International Airport has to be the most jologs airport I have been to in my life.  The moment we arrived, I thought, Egypt, this country has so much tourism revenue, oil, and a shitload of cash from passage of major shipping lines through the Suez Canal and their airport looked like a bomb shelter?  To quote my little sister, “Because of Cairo, I appreciate Manila even more.” 

I was so excited to fly to Cairo.  When the airline landed, I had to pee.  Before I queued for passport check, I went inside the airport comfort room and saw the first circle of hell.  the bathroom stall is so bad, the old bathroom of the College of Fine Arts circa mid 90s looked like it was the Hilton compared to this one.  So, it was not an ideal start for our Cairo trip.

Right now, my polo shirt looks like a dish rag and my hair is under revolt.  We just got back from Cairo.  My God.  AND we had to stay inside the airport for 15 hours because we couldn’t get in our flight and we were bumped into the next one.

It is ultimately character building to be inside an airport with minimal climate control with a temperature of 10 degrees celsius and I wore what I usually wear to school.  My mother, sister and her boyfriend were shivering and they were wearing layers of jackets and scarves.  I was just there sitting on a beat-up seat wanting to strangle that writer who said that Cairo has one of the best airports in Africa.

In hindsight, it was a sterling effort for us to be at the airport.  AND this was just our stint at the airport.

Cairo is interesting.  Cairo is cruel.

Where on earth will you get this kind of situation: ask somebody where the comfort room is, you have to pay them to guide you to the shitter.

We did have a lovely stay at Dang’s chosen hotel (more on that in another entry), it was just a five minute walk to the grand Cairo Musuem…yet, it takes 20 minutes to cross the street.  There were so many police men and yet the drivers are mostly lunatics.

Where on earth will this happen?  I almost got run over at the pedestrian lane and almost all the cars were not moving?  One asshole just decided to back his car and not even see me, this huge vision crossing the street.

Mom wanted to go to St. Catherine’s convent in Mt. Sinai.  Dang refused because that would mean that we were to take the bus for six hours to that place.  A day before we arrived, dozens were killed by a bus plunging into a canal.  So, never mind.

People always say that if you can drive in Manila, you can drive everywhere.  I think not.  Cairo just makes the Pinoy drivers look like disciplined and orderly.

Throughout the stay, I was playing a game of spotting a car without and scratches, broken lights, or warped body.  I only saw about two.  On our first day, we were stuck in traffic and the car next to us had its bumper hanging out of the window.

where on earth will you find a creature that looks like she was a cross breed from a lady bug and a zebra (possible also with a tiger and a boa constrictor):

img_2315

And this is the land of beauties like Nefertiti and Cleopatra.  I wanted to weep.  Her earrings alone are a crime against humanity.

And the taxi drivers….I now officially love Metro Manila Taxi Drivers compared to what Cairo had to offer.  In Cairo, the taxi drivers do not use their taxi meters whether you are a tourist or have been in Cairo for 400 generations.  According to a local, “Even us, they don’t use the taxi meter.  It (the fare) always comes from the taxi drivers’ imagination.”  Apparently the taxi meters are just decorations for their dashboards.

For a country rich in history and resources and under a dictatorship, the country is on tenterhooks on chaos.  As the taxi careened down the streets, I see the filth that I am accustomed to in Manila.  I see beggars shifting amongst the shadows and debris.  And the buildings of Cairo look like Sub-Saharan termite mounds.

My little sister wanted to bitch slap me when we were in a taxi and a van filled with policemen was just next to us.  I looked at the police and smiled and that was that: the policemen were leering at me.  They were jostling about making lecherous eye contact.  Dang grumbled that I shouldn’t be such a slut in Cairo.  What can I do?  I feel gratified when men see me and start acting like baboons in a cage.  And I don’t even try.  Makamandag pa rin byutih koh.  But there was a time when we were walking at the banks of the Nile River where the policemen where hooting at us.  To think I should feel safe with the police presence at the time.

Ok, I know I make Cairo sound like it is abhorrent.  But it was just an avalanche of complaints and flabbergasted disbelief for us brought by culture shock.  Be that as it may, I did have a great time.

I have been wanting to go to Cairo for years.  And there we were.  Despite the grime and sonsory assaults, I am quite pleased that I did this with my little sister, her boyfriend and my mother.  There were several instances when nerves were frayed but I now start to look back in fondness.

And you cannot buy the feeling I got when I saw the heiroglyphs, pyramids, and even a well the Holy Family used.  For a jampacked four days, we managed to travel 7,000 years of history.  I saw the mummies of Ramses II and my idol Hatshepsut.  Wow.  Just wow.  If you are like me, a glut for history and art, Cairo is a must, just bear the irritants.

Of course, I had to do a diva pose near the world’s very first massive step pyramid at Saqqara, designed by the world’s first architect and doctor Imhotep.  this is my embracing loving arms of the sun god pose:

bakla-sa-pyramid

Oha.  Matching kaming dalawa ni lady bug zebra girl divah?

Even rude Cairo cannot stop the flood, bitches.

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Responses

  1. funny post regarding ur Cairo trip, but seeing that lady bug zebra girl with your smart-ass comment elicited the greater laughter.

    Great blog btw

  2. Damn! Ang cute mo with your new hair and clean shaved! Nakakalowkah!!!!!


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