Music Reborn

It’s been at least 5 years since I’ve picked up my violin. Five years ago I was first chair in my high school orchestra and I dreaded going to rehearsal. I felt like such a fake. I didn’t practice multiple hours a day so who was I to think I could actually play the violin? My technique was not where it should have been for someone who had been playing for seven years. I knew that. I also knew that I would never amount to any sort of musician. My fears and worries came to a boiling point…

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Sexual Harassment in Egypt

My experience in Cairo so far has been a reaction to the culture. In preparing myself to be in Cairo, I’ve heard sooo many things a woman should to avoid being harassed. For those of you who I told about the wet hair thing, totally not true – my Egyptian friends laughed at me when I asked! But it pretty much boils down to this – whether or not you are wearing hijab, abaya, niqab, or nothing at all you will be harassed at some point.

Walking just outside of our hotel, men will generally make kissing…

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Taxis in Cairo

Taxis in Cairo are an adventure to say the least. My friends and I use them all the time to get form place to place when we don’t feel like using the metro, or when we have missed the shuttles the school provides to Zamalek and City Stars, the local mall that is closest to us.
There are two types of taxis you can get in Cairo, a black and white cab and a yellow cab. Yellow cabs are usually a little nicer, and the drivers may speak some English. They work on a meter system, so you…

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Wust e-Balad

Last Saturday night my friends and I went to a concert near Khan el-Khalili. We were told that we were going to see an Arabic-Jazz fusion band. What we really saw was even better. The name of the band was Wust el-Beled, literally meaning downtown country or downtown and they were fanstastic! Their music is a blend of Western and other world influences with Arabic routes. They ar definitely a big deal in Egypt, as I bought their CD at the Virgin Mega Store the next day! One of their songs, Sidi Omar is a must to listen to….

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Update!

Lots of wonderful things have happened – I visited Alexandria, went to the pyrmaids again, survived my Arabic survival course, classes started on the new campus and oh! I had a private with Raqia Hassan…

But…

My computer is dead, the internet is down in the hotel, and internet is barely running on campus, so a more detailed account of Alexandria and taking from Raqia will come soon.

Tonight I go to my first Arab music ensemble class, very excited about that.

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