Thursday, November 17, 2011

conspiracy theories

i don't believe conspiracy theories easily.  i don't like to blame our failures on other people's bad intentions.  i do believe that we are targeted by some people, but not in the "the whole world is against us" kind of way.

surprisingly, what made me write this blog post isn't anything related to the revolution in egypt...not the arrivals, freemasonry (الماسونية), freedom house, intelligence agencies, or any of that normal stuff we hear about every day...what made me think of this topic is an article i read a couple of days ago on a chess website.  it was an initiative by an international organization aiming to teach women in Palestine chess.  i thought what a cool initiative, how thoughtful of them...of course there are much more important things to do which could help the palestinians in these rough times, but it's the thought that counts.  When i read more into the article i started having second thoughts, but maybe it's just me.  it's particularly the following paragraph which made me suspicious about their intentions:

The intrinsic values of chess (such as perseverance, discipline, creativity, accepting defeat, continual quest for progress and focus) will facilitate these vulnerable young women’s personal development, improve their emotional stability and encourage their social integration.

Accepting defeat?? yeah because in chess, unlike all other sports and games, there is a winner and a loser.  how ridiculous is it to include "accepting defeat" amongst the benefits of learning chess??? am i over reacting here? do u think it was just bad taste from the author? or is there some kind of message they're trying to convey to the women of palestine that they should give up and accept the current status as it is?

tell me what u guys think about this, i'd really like to know if you think i'm over-reacting.

Friday, November 11, 2011


I just came back from Hajj yesterday.

It was an amazing experience to say the least.

Now that it's over, i realized that the most difficult parts about Hajj are the ones you can't prepare for.

  • sitting 11 hours in a bus that smells like vomit (because a little kid vomited twice, including once on the bus driver's head)
  • walking 7 km with a very painful swollen foot - i felt sorry for myself when an old man offered to carry my bag for me
  • using public bathrooms for a whole week, knowing that someone is always standing at your door waiting for you to finish...etc.

I also realized that Hajj isn't merely about getting you closer to God through spiritualities.  It also helps alot in counting your blessings.  Starting with your clothing, your shoes, your home, your bed, your phone, internet, and everything else you might have taken for granted.

I feel lucky to experience this wake-up call so early in life.  We need to reset our priorities.

I can talk for hours but i'll spare you the headache.

Sunday, October 30, 2011


Hope keeps us alive.

The best thing a person can do to himself is to set a difficult goal and strive to achieve it.

Knowing that something is virtually impossible, and still having a tiny hope that it can be done... and the more you chase the dream, the more you realize that nothing's impossible.

The effort you put into achieving the dream... the suffering you go through...the sacrifices you make...

the exhausting journey filled with pleasure and pain...

it's all worth it.

and most of the time, it doesn't even matter to you anymore that you finally achieved the dream...what matters the most is that you proved everyone overcame the difficulties despite everyone's lack of believed in yourself.


I'm currently at that starting phase where everything is unclear and you start giving yourself false hope when you know deep inside that these things don't happen in real life...

i'm at the phase where i imagine how happy i will be at the end if i DID achieve my dream, but when i look at the obstacles i lose hope again...

i'm at the phase where i write stupid blog posts just to encourage myself, then realize mid-way that it's not working.

oh well.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011


Sense of Humor............................check
Ethics & Religion............................check
Social class & family reputation.......check
Suitable wife?................................nope.

Every man has his own checklist when it comes to imagining what the right girl should be like.  I'm sure the women have their own checklist as well.  I recently realized that no matter how perfect the girl is on paper, it's the whole package that counts.  You can't judge if a girl is suitable or not based on a checklist.  Sure it can be used as a preliminary guide, but you shouldn't base your final decision on it.

The key word is Chemistry.  Chemistry will make your life lighten up all of a will make you ignore any of the items in the checklist if the girl doesn't satisfy will make you feel excited that this is the person you will be spending the rest of your life with, simply because she understands you.  Simply because you have a connection.

I'm the kind of guy that enjoys stability.   I can see my future as a family guy, studying for my children and making sure they do their homework and sleep early...taking them to swimming twice a week...helping my wife with dinner every once in a know, the kind of stuff my own dad used to do.

Getting married is a huge decision, and i've been really close to being married at least once so far.  The reasons it didn't work out are irrelevant, but i can't say i'm happy with where i am at the moment.  Sometimes i get worried that my chances of finding the right person are decreasing greatly because i'm not in Egypt anymore.  I'm 28 now and the last thing i would ever want is to pass 30 without getting married...i want my children to have a normal father with a normal age difference.

The thing is, even when i was in Egypt it wasn't that easy to find someone good.  It so happened that my circle of friends, whether they're in college or work, had no one suitable for me.  Now what? If I don't bump into a girl in a random place, and we click instantly like we see in the movies, then i guess i have no other option but to listen to my family's recommendations of having a pre-arranged "Salon" wedding.  Is that so bad? At first it was. I didn't want any other people interfering in this important decision at all, not even a little bit...I can handle things on my own.

On a completely related note, our society is messed up.

Most of the marriages don't work out for financial reasons.  It pisses me off so much that parents are putting prices for their children's happiness.  They don't realize that after a year from the wedding, no one even remembers any of these stupid details.  The only thing that matters is if the couple is happy or not.

I hate how egyptian families complicate things.  I hate how the parents are always desperate for their kids to get married (whether they're boys or girls), and once they find the appropriate partner, the parents don't even consider making any compromises to make things work.  I'm not referring to my own parents here, i'm just talking generally about our society in egypt.  Countless relationships have been ended just because the parents of both parties were playing a game of "who's in control".  They forget how desperate they were for this opportunity to come, and how hard it might be for their beloved child to find someone else suitable.

There's a lot to talk about when it comes to marriage.  I don't think this will be the end of it.

Friday, October 21, 2011


This is a difficult post to write.  I don't enjoy expressing my weak points.

As you might already know, i have been living outside egypt for almost a year now.  I've visited egypt twice  since then - quick 3-day trips - just because i was feeling homesick.

Don't get me wrong, i'm very happy with the direction my career is taking.  I was totally against leaving Egypt and working abroad, but the opportunity that came up was just too good i guess.  Working in a multinational company as an architecture specialist is a dream job for many people my age, me included.  Lots of travelling is involved, the work itself is very diverse and it isn't boring at all, i get to meet many VIP's and coordinate with them in lots of projects, and ofcourse I can't complain about the money.  El7amdolellah.

It's the times when I'm not working that I hate the most.  Facebook and youtube can be good companions for an hour or so, but what next?  I'm not much of a TV guy and besides, all the shows these days are talking about politics and stuff... i hate that.  I managed to make some friends from work and we play soccer every wednesday.  The fact that they're all married makes it very difficult to socialize with them more frequently.

I miss sitting with my friends at the Ahwa at 2:00am playing cards or just chatting about random stuff with shisha in my hand and enjoying cairo's beautiful weather.

I miss being able to go to sa7el on the weekend to take a swim in our amazing beaches and come back refreshed to start a new exhausting work week.

I miss taking my sister to eat sushi in dandy mall like we used to do at least once a month.

I miss hanging out with Mahmoud & Ahmed, reminiscing about the stupid stuff we used to do when we were kids.

I miss taking my dogs out for a walk late at night.

I miss my chess-enthusiast friends who i would always find available to play some quality chess with.

I miss my old work friends who were more than family for 3 whole years.

I miss the joy of watching both of my nieces growing up and learning something new every day (they're 2 years old now).

I miss taking random walks on Imbaba bridge every once in a while and enjoying the best view of the nile available in cairo.

I miss going to alexandria in the winter.

I miss being next to my parents, knowing they're in good health.

The list goes on and on...

Loneliness is brutal.


I can't promise that i'll stay here for long but it feels good to be back.  My new sweet friend Zaina has inspired me to get back to blogging, so you should all blame her for this crime i'm about to commit :)

It's been more than two years since i've last posted and there's lots of stuff going on these days. I think it's only healthy to vent and ramble even though few people are actually paying attention.

I can imagine that the next few posts will probably have a serious and somewhat depressing edge (or as some fellow egyptians might say: "tutch").  That's normal i guess, posting happy thoughts isn't really my kind of thing.  I tend to enjoy the happy moments and live them without expressing my feelings, whereas the sad moments: well, misery loves company.

You can't say i didn't warn you :)