By: Farida Abd El Aziz

I always wondered how it would feel like to walk in the streets of Egypt. The idea of speaking my native language with random people seemed very exciting to the naïve person I used to be. “I would not have to speak in English anymore and I would finally feel home,” that is what I thought at that time.

“The country of the kind” was my idea of Egypt before getting my face slammed really hard with what I regret to call reality. I lived in Dubai for the past twelve years of my life; a few months ago was my flight to Egypt. I encountered various situations that completely destroyed the dreamy life I had planned for myself over here.

1. Transportation

TRANSPORTATION was and actually still is my nightmare in the capital. For someone who doesn’t drive, moving from one place to another is quite a hassle. PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION IS NOT SAFE FOR A YOUNG GIRL LIKE YOU. (This is one thing my parents managed to plant in my head).

So my only means of transportation was a car that did not belong to a stranger (aka parent’s/friend’s) until I met my life saver: private car services.

Little did I know that this was not the difficult part.

transportation

2. Congestion

Congestion in the city is even worse than finding transportation. Timings given by the GPS are the biggest lie I’ve encountered in my life. For example, it would say three minutes left yet it would take me almost an hour to reach my destination.     

traffic

3. Roaming the streets

Walking in the streets of Cairo didn’t turn out as romantic as I thought it would be. You would be lucky to walk for ten minutes and not have someone throw some lame, snarky comments at you out of the blue.

I was afraid of walking in the streets at first but I’ve decided if I actually want to live here, I have to build up my courage.

walking-streeets

4. Language

Next comes my problem with the language. For someone who spoke in English for almost the entire day in Dubai, it is very hard to convert to Egyptian in no time.

Therefore, if I include a few words in English within my Arabic sentence please know that my attempt is not to show off but it’s rather a habit that I am trying to minimize.

language

5. Internet

Egyptian Internet… I am speechless. The only thing I can say is that I really miss good Wi-Fi.

slow-internet

These are some of the problems anyone is going to face when coming back to Egypt after being away for so long but despite the negativities, I am more than happy to be back.

I am more than happy to be surrounded by the family I had always missed, and I am more than happy to be given the opportunity to make Egyptian friends and build a life in my own country.

Yes, Egypt is not as perfect as I had planned but it’s only a matter of getting used to how things go over here. For a matter of fact, I know I am about to encounter many more adventures in Egypt and I hope to share them all with you.

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