Sports, Weddings and Language Experiences

pyramidsLast weekend I had a trip scheduled to go back to Cairo because one of my friends was getting engaged to an Egyptian woman. Another development also came up which for me was a wonderful opportunity. Egypt was the host nation of the under-20 year old World Cup Football tournament. It just so happened that the championship game and the third and fourth place game were going to be held at the Cairo stadium the day before the engagement party, and one of my friends could get fairly cheap tickets. So I decided to make the trek up to Cairo a day early to watch the game. Neither of the games were very exciting at all, which was disappointing. But it was a great experience being a part of the crowd. The stadium was packed, obviously, and when we had gone 75 minutes into the game (Brazil was playing Ghana in the finals) and neither team had really even had any good chances at scoring, much less actually scored a goal, the entire stadium decided to start cheering for Egypt. So that was probably the most exciting part of the game was 65,000 people doing their standard Egypt cheers. It made me wish that Egypt was actually in the finals. Ghana ended up winning in penalty kicks by the way … after 120 minutes with nothing remarkable happening in the game.

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Arrival in Egypt

Church Wall with Icon

Our housemates on the top floor above the Bishops residents were mostly young men who were working with the Church. They spoke almost no English but were very passionate about helping us learn Arabic and picking up some English along the way. I actually learned enough to basically get around because of these interactions. They also loved to cook for us which I was quite happy for. The other resident was an older, celibate priest who was quite playful and would often harass the young men while the others looked on and laughed uproariously.

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