Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Top 6 Things To Miss About Living In Egypt

I've heard this story one hundred times at the very least: once you go to Egypt, you can't leave anymore. I thought I would probably be affected by the famous charm they all talked about but I never saw it affecting any of my decisions. Just a few weeks ago I left Egypt for the first time, and although I don't plan to move back there for good just yet, I definitely know the charm got me. There are a few things that would never sound good to someone except they have lived in Egypt. In a way, hating to live in Cairo is probably the only way to live there, however, that hatred goes hand in hand with some amazing things, and once you left you'll know what they are. I opted to make a list of the things that are worth missing instead of the things I would never miss because I'd be writing until the morning.

#1 Cheap, cheap, cheap
I really, really, really miss being able to afford things. Granted, I am a freelance journalist that doesn't make a good salary around the globe, but my little salary takes me a long way in Egypt. For just over 300 dollars I had my monthly expenses paid including all my food and whatever was left I would spend on fun times. Since a fun time for me included just sipping a fresh orange juice on a boat on the Nile, my fun was easy to finance because that whole thing wouldn't cost me more than 3 dollars a night.

#2 Not hearing "I have a stomach ache!" as an excuse for going out
Making plans for the night in Egypt means coming up with a plan. Done. That's it. Finding people to execute that plan with you is, unlike in the rest of the world, not even an issue in Egypt. Text a friend, or if you have to a couple, and if they don't wanna go they will know someone who does. And if all else fails, post on Facebook and twenty to thirty volunteers are available at all times. Making friends with people is easy, and staying friends is even easier.

#3 RBF with no questions asked
I was once known to people as the "nicest person they know". Those days are over! Thanks to Egypt, I have learned to have Resting Bitch Face at all times, even when I want to be friendly, so I don't get bothered by pesky men. I enjoy being friendly, but most of the time when I am not in a great mood it is nice to be in Egypt and actually having to be rude to people, or at least look like you would be if anyone dared to speak to you.

#4 Free Internet for everyone, everywhere
Yeeeeah, this "You may not surf on the internet in public"-business Europe has going on is ridiculous, at least if you don't have a data package. In Egypt, they throw the (ridiculously slow and unbelievably bad) internet at you. And you know what else is alright there? No prosecution of internet piracy. I know, I know, musicians and filmmakers are people too and I shouldn't steal from them, and I don't, simply because it's pretty impossible in Germany to even stream stuff on the internet. But when the new Bachelorette is out I'll be sure to download it right away.

#5 Take me anywhere for five dollars
Travel, oh yeah, travel. How could I not miss the pool in the middle of the desert, surrounded by sand dunes, with turquoise water just outside of Cairo? And how would I not appreciate being on the beach within an hour, for like no money at all? But most importantly, how much does it suck not being able to get on a ten dollar bus to the South Coast of Sinai where I get a three dollar hostel and have a six dollar lobster dinner in Dahab? Never mind that taking the metro in Cairo costs 20 cents, no matter to what station. In a nutshell, for no money at all there is a country waiting to be explored, and everyone does.

#6 Two words: Delivery "Everything"
In one year in Cairo, I cooked two, maybe three meals. What's the point of going grocery shopping in a country where I understand nothing, preparing all that food and having to clean after if they bring me every restaurant to my doorstep for a charge of a dollar? My greed is non-existent when it comes to the beautiful delivery system of Egypt: McDoanlds, Sushi, coffee, supermarkets, pharmacies and รก la Carte restaurants all deliver, even booze, usually around the clock, so why leave and deal with stares and annoyances? Hangovers have never been better...

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