I arrived back in Egypt about an hour ago. I figured a brief blog entry would be easier than a mass amount of e-mails, but I apologize if it seems informal. I’m simply exhausted.
It’s always difficult to leave home, but adapting and re-adapting are part of life, and it becomes easier with time. Because I spent my last night in the States out until the wee hours with Christine and Shar and didn’t slow down the following day, I was completely beat by the time I boarded the plane to Heathrow and passed out for most of the flight. I didn’t even watch a movie.
Still feeling a bit low, I staggered into the Heathrow terminal for my five hour layover, which I swore I’d spend writing but instead spent sleeping in a crowded waiting area where I awoke an hour later with drool on my chin. It’s comforting to know I won’t see any of those people again.
I cheered up a lot when, heading toward the gate to board, I ran into my friend Sarah and we chatted. It’s always good to find a friend, and she’s one of the better ones I’ve made here, so I was super delighted to see her. The plane was fantastic; lots of legroom in every row and very spacious overall. A man sat next to me, and a nice family sat behind me. As it turned out, the man next to me was Zekky (spell check tomorrow), the Egyptian national soccer team coach. He was super nice, and we conversed for a while. I didn’t realize how popular he was until the man sitting behind us approached me later and asked if I knew who I was sitting next to.
“He was reading a copy of the paper with his picture in it!” he told me.
I finally watched Midnight in Paris, which I liked for its quirky, impossible plotline and a swarthy Ernest Hemingway, and then found nothing better to watch but Nights in Rodanthe, which is depressing. I had a driver picking me up at the airport, and Sarah hopped in also.
We successfully navigated customs (me with the help of the kind man who sat behind me on the plane) and headed back to Maadi.
Even though I was away for two weeks, it already feels like I never left. And those two weeks flew by – by far the fastest ever in my life. It makes me believe in that idea that time isn’t as measured and linear as we think it is.
I’m glad to be back safe in my apartment with two lovely roommates, and I am very glad I ran into Sarah at the airport, making the return to Cairo much happier and more welcoming.