Friday, 1 May 2009

Keeping Pace

There's something a little nerve racking being the last Westerner to clear Egyptian customs, especially when you have a track record.
Leave it to this clown to pick the slowest moving line, and there you have it.
However, despite the long wait and the many questions, this scruffy looking trouble maker was allowed in.

Cairo hasn't changed, I've been gone almost a year now and it's like I never skipped a beat.

The same crowded, half-complete airport.
The same heated arguments over price which lead to,
The same death defying taxi ride,

Once on the road again, my Arabic was tested, having to direct the once sure taxi driver along the highway and through the back streets of Maadi,

The original plan was to hold up at a coffee shop until the morning at which I would head to church and grovel for a bed, a couch, even some floor space, but when it's 3:30 in the morning, my mood had changed somewhat and I pulled up to a hotel.

Another argument with the taxi driver ensued over price, at the end of which we both parted ways feeling shorted, and I marched inside past a sleeping guard, who woke with a start when I set off the metal detector.

The receptionist was less than pleased when he too was woken just a little after 3:30, and insisted they were full up. However in his sleepy deprived state, he mentioned a room being held by reservation, which I may or may not have per-swayed him to give me the key to.

The room is small, with a hard single bed in the middle.
The ensuite bathroom door does not fully shut, and the toilet constantly runs, but it will serve me well.
I dropped my bags inside, and headed back out.

Somethings never fail and after a short march through the darkened, stray dog infested, Maadi streets, I came to the coffee shops, which were indeed open.
However, the internet provider techs seemed to have gone to sleep, and the long awaited call home, had to be postponed.

A quick visit to the automatic currency converter and a glass of fresh guava juice later, I was back in my room listening to the running toilet, which despite all my efforts, my country music just wouldn't drown out and it was to this that I fell asleep.

Weekends are different here in Egypt, and it just so happens that church is on Friday mornings.
Not a few hours after I had fallen asleep did I find myself in a cab heading to church.

Nostalgia, friends and memories greeted me,
And after two services, a quality message, and two rounds of communion later,
I have a floor to crash on, friends to meet for lunch and a refugee school to paint tomorrow.

Things happen quick here,
I just hope I can keep up.

Grace, Peace and Blessings,

1 comment:

The Smith's said...

You should write a book. You have great story telling skills my friend. We are glad you are there safe and sound, we can all breathe a little easier now. It is so awesome to see God at work in your life, we pray through Gods spirit that you will touch those people who are in need over there.