It was one year ago today we left the US. I don't remember much of the flight except for the fact that Aliatalia will never get our business again. The attendants were rude and non-caring. They treated Europeans one way and Americans another way -- definitely not better than the Europeans on the flight.
I remember flying over Europe and seeing the Italian Alps. That part of the flight was beautiful.
It was difficult not talking to my family the day we left -- but something I felt was better than calling them because I would have been in tears. I called my Dad and said good-bye once again. Lainie called me and we talked and cried. I miss them terribly.
There are things I wish we would have brought which we didn't and things that I brought which I wish we didn't . Does that make any sense?
Overall, this past year has been a tremendous learning experience, but I suppose life is one large learning experience.
My international driver's license expires tomorrow so we are going out today to get my Egyptian license. We need to go downtown to Dokki Street to get the license -- it's crowded to say the least. Egyptian government buildings have absolutely no comforts for customers. It's alright, though because once this is over and done, there isn't much left to do in terms of the Egyptian government. And we need to take care of this today or else I will need to take the driving test all over again.
While we are downtown we hope to find the section of Cairo that sells the garden furniture -- wicker or rattan for our front balcony. Because the weather is so beautiful here, the balcony is an extension of the home -- an additional room where we can sit all day and all night. Our front balcony faces north so we shouldn't get too much sun in the summer -- maybe just the sunsets if we're lucky. We have been going back and forth on what type of furniture to buy for the balcony -- wrought iron is very popular here but not very comfortable. I wanted to make the balcony "baladi" or local, like an Egyptian sheesha bar, but after we got the dining room it wouldn't be as appropriate. So we're going for wicker and rattan which ought to be nice and comfortable. Everything and anything is available here we just need to know where to find it.
That's where Hassan's friends Shaaban and Gamal come in. They have been very helpful in guiding us through the neighborhoods of Cairo to find exactly what we are looking for. Not only have they been helpful but they have also been extremely patient as we try to decide what we want for the flat.