Tuesday, June 09, 2009

To Cairo and Back

  1. Now an officer in uniform walk with me to make sure I leave, he expedited some of the security procedures and he was talking friend conversations as we walk through the airport. His rank was Moqadem I know this because someone else revered to him as such.
  2. I guess the trip was great since I now know for sure that I am swine flue free, thanks to the good medical teams of Egypt. 30 minutes was enough to kick me out of their country and ensure that I do not have any flu.
  3. Now here comes the surprise, the officer asks me to give him some money for his help. Now, this was a classic Fuck you moment! First he was doing his job—keeping his country safe from “dangerous” people like myself. He is an officer of the law and he is now asking for a kickback. I said, look I am being deported man…you think I had time to go to the bank? Or even grab some cash…I told him I had only 5 Euros on me. He said, “Anything would be good!” Now, I wasn’t gonna have it, now he got on my nerves. His bosses are kicking me out of Egypt and he wants to collect from me for doing his job. In short he wanted me to pay him to do his job which is keeping Egypt safe. Here is what I told him, word for word “You see, I am being kicked out of your country man, Egypt the country I love and grew up studying its history and geography,” “I didi not do anything wrong, I am going to see my family and you guys do not let me,” “This is insane and goes against God’s law” “you think, if I was a threat to your country American will let me live, work and prosper there?” I guess the poor Egyptian officer was asking me to reward him for his help deporting me out of Egypt faster. Do not we all love to get things done faster? I know I do.
  4. He nodded his head and said nothing. Then he got up walked me into another gate, said you are now on your own. To lighten the mode, I asked him to come with me to Madrid where I will treat him, he laughed and said “Me, Madrid” and walked away.
  5. I walk into the plane—the one I came on form Madrid with the same crew who one of them recognized me the moment I walked in and said, “You again!” I guess not too many people ask for 4 cups of coffee and wear thick Giorgio Armani eyeglasses. He asked me what happened and I almost joked about having the swine flu. But instead I told him it is paperwork; he was genuinely interested to learn more. He said “Why would they do that, you are not going to Israel!” I said “Go figure” He was a full Spanish man in his early 30s and that what it took to state the obvious.
  6. Lesson Learned: Going into another Arab country for an Arab is nothing short of the night club experience. Just like in order to get in one of those, you cannot just have a pass (a visa) but you can get your name on a list. The person who puts you on the list is a thug and a high school dropout who makes a living from judging people and discriminating against others. Also in the club, if you say one wrong word or a word out of line, they will toss you out, black list you and band you from ever coming to the establishment. No wonder they do not have any major night clubs in Arabia, each country is like a night club where




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