Tuesday, June 8, 2010

A Tale of Two Fridays

Friday nimra waaHid:

We woke up and got to church almost on time for the first time. We had a good time in our meetings with a tour group from Utah wandering around making us feel like old hands. After the block we walked back to our apartment with our two professors from BYU who are our home teachers, after asking us during church if they could come over.

After home teaching, we walked up to Road 9 to meet Hamdi at his shop. He wanted to take us to his mother's house in Cairo, and we happily went along, not even really knowing where she lived or what it would be like. We got in his car and started driving. We drove a while, then came to a parking lot. But the parking lot wasn't near any apartments, so we were a little confused. Our confusion quickly turned to comprehension when we realized there were boats, and people entering the boats. Much to our delight, we were going to the gazeera (island) where Hamdi was from. We got to ride in an old sail boat across the Nile and it was so picturesque. Unfortunately, we forgot our camera. But I'm sure Hamdi will take us back.

Highlights of the trip to the gazeera: lunch of eggs, cucumbers, tomatoes, chips, and eish. Interesting combination. Visiting Hamdi's mother's shop (NOT kiosk). Having a million children hover around Amir as we walked through the streets. Visiting an old Coptic church. Seeing women washing their clothes in the Nile, like we were in the olden days. The Island was quiet and humble. We liked it compared to the craziness of Cairo right across the water.

Friday nimra itneen:

Today we went over to Tim's security guard friend's apartment, which is literally a hop, skip, and jump away from ours. It's in the slummier areas right behind where we live, and the building looks homemade from bricks and concrete goop. The stairs were uneven and roughly constructed, and I decided that if an earthquake hit, I would rather not be here. Amir started screaming when they greeted us with loud exclamations in his face. He calmed down after about 5 minutes or so but was still a little shaken up. We weren't expecting dinner, but as soon as we arrive anywhere, the food starts a-flowin'. Fried fish from the street, rice and lentils, tomato and cucumber salad, and eish of course. After we ate as much us our stomachs could possibly hold, we sat around their living room and chatted. The conversations went as follows:

Said's wife (pointing at my arms): Arabic, Arabic, Arabic.
Me: Eeh?
Wife (pointing at herself): 'Ana "sweet."
Me: Sweet?
Wife: Yes, sweet. Arabic, Arabic, Arabic.
Me: What?
Wife (making motions that indicate spreading things on her arms and ripping them off): 'Ana sweet. You need sweet.
Wife (pointing to my face and presumably saying in Arabic): Yes, that's what we need to do because I saw how hairy your legs were and also maybe your upper lip could use a waxing too.

Said's mother (all in Arabic, later translated to me by Tim): I read tea leaves.
Tim: Oh that's nice. What's our future like?
Mother: One more baby only, two babies is enough. And it will be a boy.
Tim: But my wife really wants a daughter.
Mother (after much deep contemplation): Yes, it will be a girl. But only if she prays a lot.

I guess the sex of our next baby will determine how righteous I am.

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