Sevcik's Blog

A year in Cairo Egypt

Friday, September 16, 2005

the past few days

For the past few days we have spent most of our time studying Arabic and going to Arabic class. It’s horrible to say, but I cannot wait for the class to be over! I know in the long run I’m learning a lot from this course, and indeed I really enjoy the fact that I can look at Arabic writing and do a decent job of sounding it out (although that doesn’t mean I know what word(s) I’m speaking) but I’ve never felt so stupid in my life. Every day we are told we don’t study enough and “not good.” I definitely want to learn Arabic, but I’ve realized that an intensive course in the Egyptian-style education just doesn’t work too well for me. I think I’ll be easier to learn Arabic after this month as I’ll have the foundation from class without the pressure to be perfect and instead learn the words I’ll be using, such as “orange juice” and “Can I get a taxi to…”
A couple nights ago we had dinner at Brice’s home. Brice is a seminary student and a PC(USA) missionary. He just came back from Palestine, where he had an engagement ceremony with his Palestinian fiancé and her family. In Palestine the engagement is almost like a wedding—you have a huge party and dress up, eat wedding cake, exchange rings, etc. His finance’s mom sent him home with a duffle bag full of home-made Palestinian food and we had the pleasure of enjoying the hummus, feta cheese and olives, and fig cookies. Yum!
A funny story—Yesterday Jason wanted to iron his shirt and was asking one of our servants for an iron and ironing board. Martha doesn’t speak English, and she assumed Jason didn’t know how to iron (or maybe she just thought it was her job to do it?) so she took his shirt and ironed it for him. She put the shirt on the board, took out a spray bottle of water, and turned on the iron; all fine and dandy. Then, she opened the spray bottle, drank some of the water, and proceeded to spit it out in a spray fashion onto Jason’s shirt for ironing! Well, it worked! J


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