Monday, August 9, 2010

I'll Teach You How to Act in Public!

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On my way to class each day, I pass by an all-girls, private elementary school. Like all private facilities in Cairo, police guards stand outside of the school's gates to monitor who comes in and out. Today, as I walked by, one of the police officers made kissing sounds, spsst, and shouted at me. I  ignored him and continued on my way to class.

A few hours later, when class was over and I was walking back to the metro, I saw a few young hijabi girls leaving the gates. Once the same gaurd noticed me, he began making kissing noises and shouting again. That was it! I snapped! How is this little fucker going to protect these girls if he doesn't even respect women! I stopped in my tracks, turned around, and marched towards him. He'd been leaning against a car with a sly grin on his face but when he saw me coming his way, he stumbled to get to his feet and adjust his uniform. I stopped inches from him and demanded in Arabic, "Who's your boss?" He stammered for a while trying to think up a response. The more he stammered, the madder I became, "Who is your fuckin' boss," I asked again, this time in English. Having regained his composure, he pointed at his gun holster and the patch on his arm designating his rank as if to warn me.

I've had about all I can take of Egyptian men! I clenched my fist and asked him again, "Who is YOUR BOSS!" The other guards had walked over by now but they all stood back to see how he would handle the situation. He stood his ground for a few more seconds as a mix of emotions passed over his face, finally he settled on embarrassment and his shoulders stooped. He backed away from me and put his hands up in surrender, "Asfa, Ana asfa." Sorry, I'm sorry. The gaurd closest to him repeated his apology. Recognizing my small victory, I decided to leave it at that. I walked away with my held head high as all the police guards looked down at the ground to avoid making eye contact with me.



Guess who's blog is a finalist for BEST TRAVEL BLOG 2010?!! MINE!!! Thanks everyone for voting for me! please take a moment to vote 1 last time for BLACK IN CAIRO: http://bit.ly/cnMGuT



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7 comments:

Zeitoune M-P said...

I am so proud of you! I was in Cairo 10 years ago and I understand what you are going through. I just discovered your blog yesterday and I LOVE it! I also went to Aswan and will never forget the welcome also!

Nice Anon said...

Just read all of your posts! I can live vicariously through you. I like your blog! keep writing. Oh I wanted to ask .. whatever happened to the guy you went out with? You know the one who plays basketball.

Women rights are seriously lacking in Africa. I can tell you that for sure.

Vera B. said...

I guess he wanted to do a little flirting while he was working. Maybe to help kill sometime. *Kiss, Kiss*
Btw what do u think about Wyclef's decision to run for president in Haiti? Here's someone else view on it.

http://www.iamlondondiva.com/2010/08/wy-i-dont-think-clef-should-be-running.html

Frenchie said...

I felt so empowered ladies!

@Nice The baller returned to the US after his season was up. We've kept in touch but I'm not interested in pursuing something serious with him

@Vera Clef is an unnecessary distraction. He doesn't have the leadership, language, political, diplomatic, or international development skills needed for the monumental task at hand

meandmypassport said...

Love it, way to stand up for yourself!

Great blog btw :-)

oyzz said...

im an egyptian but was raised abroad and so i relate on many levels to many of your experiences,the problems and the culture shock as well, but i cant seem to help but notice an overall bickering tone to all your observations, and ann attitude of someone who is looking for things to be wrong.
but then again i dont know you and i could very well be mistake.
wehy do u live here if u hate it so much, is the question though. ?

Adjoa said...

May I have the honor of reposting this entry on my blog? naaadjoa2.wordpress.com

I'd be honored if you said yes. Very interesting blog.

-Adjoa

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