I Am Legend

Oh My God!

This is THE scary movie. Perhaps for others it is not a scary movie at all, but for me I wasn’t able to keep my eyes open in some scenes, I had to put my hands on my ears so I don’t hear anything.

I always feared something like this.Everything is normal and all. Being alone in a city and all. But the idea of those “things” coming out at night, it’s just horrible.

And the wordt thing is that we know that this is not purely science fiction, this is something that can really happen. Rabena yostor…

Circassians of Egypt

Yesterday I received some interesting stuff about Circassians in Egypt:

The Circassians in Egypt are different than those who later went to Jordan, specifically because of the fact that there has been a Circassian presence in Egypt since 1382, and also for the fact that the Circassians in Egypt are so much a part of a continuous Egyptian history for so long that they became assimilated into Egyptian society much more readily. Especially as they mostly served in such high military and political positions. Their influence on Egypt is such that they are part of the evolution of modern Egypt, and are so much a part of this country that they are synonymous with the analogy of the Normans in England.
Subsequent to the Norman conquest of Saxon Britain in 1066, the Normans dominated the military/political classes until quite recently, the British military officer class, for example, was overwhelmingly of Norman descent until WWI.
The Circassians in Jordan came much later and their connection is also much more recent to the geographical land mass of what is today called Jordan. Their presence there is as a result of the construction of the hijaz (pilgrim route from Diyarbekr to Medina) railway in the 1870’s. The refugees from the end of the Caucasian wars were settled every 30 km in villages along the route of the railway, in order to defend the railway from marauding Arab tribesmen. Which is why there are such large Circassian communities in Syria and in Jordan today.

It puzzles me that Circassians living in Egypt lost all contact with their homeland, forgot their language and their traditions, while those living in Jordan still remember these things, even though Circassians have a long history in Egypt (ok, with some good and some bad, really bad, memories). But still why did Egyptian-Circassians forget about all of their past? Where they that assimilated into the Egyptian society that they forgot everything.

I won’t talk about the Circassian Mamluks periods. It is a very long history, and it makes sense that the Bahareya Mamluks would mingle easier than their precedents because they lived in El Roda and not in the Citadel , and because they were born and raised in Egypt, not bought as young slaves from Caucasia, and because the relation between them and their masters differed by time. I can imagine this. What I can’t imagine is those of the relatively modern era. Those who fled the Russian massacres and came to Egypt. There are lots of ambiguity.

For example, Mohamed Aly killed ALL OF THE CIRCASSIAN LEADERS IN ONE NIGHT (except for one who jumped with his horse over the walls, or so they say), if he feared them to that extent, why would he accept new immigrants and not kill them at the gates of the city? I know that the Citadel massacre was targeting imposing his political will on the various factions that were going to threaten his throne, it was evident that most likely the Circassian would miss their old days before the Othman rule and may re-start their bloody contest of power. But why would he still trust Circassians again and use them in the army and the state? The circassians at that time enjoyed a good position in the society, perhaps better than the Egyptians themselves (!!!) (Walahi the Egyptians are either stupid or powerless, they were treated as second citizens in their own country in comparison to some newcomers, and they were ruled by an Albanian who considered their land as his personal belonging! But that’s another story)

Today I bought brown shoes

Yes, that’s true 🙂 Today I bought brown shoes.

This might seem to be trivia for some people, but for me this is a big event. I am one of the unlucky girls who’s shoes size is 42 (plus or minus  1 depending on the design), and in all the stores around here the maximum size is 41. So baasically I don’t find my size at all. Now,,, what shall I do? What shall I do?? I can either walk barefoot (= not a very good idea in the streets of Cairo), or I should find a solution.

Solution #1: go shopping in a country where the women have big feet (I don’t know where exactly)
Solution #2: hit the men section and assume that it is a unisex desgin (duh!)
Solution #3: Go to some specialized big sizes shoes, namely: Clark’s (pretty expensive, starts from 400 LE), or Professor (very bad taste and very cheap)
Solution #4: especially tailored shoes (takes time, the results may not be perfect)
Soltuion #5: Online shoping (if you are into that, but how will it be shipped? and how much taxes will be paid??)
Solution #6: Bribe a friend to buy you a pair while s/he is travelling abroad

So to all those who complain about not finding a good pair shoes afer looking in 20 stores, just consider yourself lucky. That’s all that I can say…