Posts Tagged ‘baksheesh’

The Egyptian Bread Crisis—أزمة الخبز المصرية

Monday, April 28th, 2008
BreadBike.jpg

This article was commissioned for Is Greater Than

Speakers of Egyptian colloquial Arabic use the same word, عيش (‘aish), for both “bread” and “life”. Indeed, bread represents on average around 50–60% of Egyptians’ caloric intake and is the perennial complement to every meal. Cairo streets in the mornings are awash in the stuff, with the smell of bread wafting out of bakeries and mingling with the ever-present car exhaust, men and boys criss-crossing through traffic on bikes, balancing as many as a hundred of the flat loaves in wooden racks on their heads, vendors distributing the loaves from special racks on their backs or on blankets or sheets of plastic on street corners, carts and hole-in-the-wall shops doling out small sandwiches filled with فول (fuul, cooked fava beans) and تعمية (ta’maya, an Egyptian variation on falafel). (more…)

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Nile Cruise—رحلة النيل

Tuesday, January 15th, 2008

luxor2_05

Embarrassing as this fact is, this was my second cruise on the Nile in only a couple months. It’s shockingly easy to live a posh middle-class lifestyle in this country with the right connections and a modest (by US standards) income. But this is not what I wanted to talk about (hopefully I’ll get up the gumption to be that reflexive about my place in this country in a later post). This cruise was part of the class on the Nile River that I and Adrienne are in. I’ve written extensively about the Nile cruise previously, here, here and here, with pictures from the trip in four previous posts (1, 2, 3, 4) so I’ll be keeping this somewhat short and condensing the four-day trip into one entry. (more…)

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Egyptian Agricultural Museum—متحف الزراعي المصري

Tuesday, January 8th, 2008

Dead animals exhibit

Museums are interesting creatures in general, but they seem to become even more so with a constrained budget. The lack of polish tends to bring the building blocks and construction methods—material and ideological—into relief. It’s difficult to focus on the other world into which one is being transported when the vehicle is backfiring and the transmission sounds like it’s about to drop. (more…)

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Traffic in Cairo—الممور في القاهرة

Thursday, October 18th, 2007

I went a bit crazy for the short period when i wasn’t biking here in Cairo.   (more…)

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