Sevcik's Blog

A year in Cairo Egypt

Saturday, December 10, 2005

The first TINY bit of Christmas!

Thursday evening I attended a Cairo Choral Society music concert held at All Saints Cathedral on Zamalak Island with Teri and Jen. It was the largest group of ex-pats I have seen since Chicago, but it was so great! The church was packed solid (we had to sit on the floor) and the sounds of Beethoven’s Mass in C and selections from Handel’s Messiah could be heard for almost two hours. I spent most of the time with my eyes closed soaking in the sound. I’ve come to appreciate music, especially classical music, so much these past couple months that I’ve been trying to attend at least one concert a week. This was a special concert, however, as it was the first sign of the Christmas season I have experienced yet. For those of you who have never been outside the country during the Christmas season, it is darn strange, especially when you are in a place where most people do not celebrate Christmas. Without experiencing advent (or seeing snow!) it’s not ‘beginning to look a lot like Christmas.’ As much as we (I included) complain about the commercialization of Christmas in America, it certainly adds to the Christmas spirit in ways you can’t imagine until you don’t have it!

After the concert we walked through the Marriott hotel and found more Christmas decorations—YIPPEE! We saw trees and fake snow and little figurines ice skating. The Marriott Bakery even had a huge gingerbread house! Ah…even though the Marriott screams “WEALTH, WEALTH, WEALTH!” I have to admit I felt more comfortable in there than I have anywhere in Cairo for at least the past two months.

As a random comment, today I saw Harry Potter IV with some friends from work and Jason. In Egypt, there is an intermission in the middle of the movie. I think this just stinks, as it completely cuts the mood and brings you back into reality when really you just want to live in the screen for a couple hours. Also, you buy your seats (much like going to the theatre in America). I ended up sitting next two a couple of rowdy kids throwing around popcorn instead of the rest of the group, but at least I was a bit closer to the screen! Also, as we were walking back to St. Andrews from the movie theatre it occurred to me we were representing 5 countries—Sudan, America, Burkina Faso, Egypt, and Eritrea. Gotta love that!


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