I feel like today my Egyptian life really starts!  (For your reference, I am back at my apartment in Mohandessin).  I have broken the boundary of fear and have begun to master my neighborhood!  After class I went to an ‘ahwa with my German classmate.  I finally made it to an ‘ahwa and enjoyed some tea and shisha.  ‘ahwas are just great for talking about life, and talk about life we did!  I am glad to have found a spot that is on my way home from Kalimat.
Then I met up a friend of a friend at Sphinx square and walked her to my house.  She is an American interning at the American embassy.  This was a double success in that I made a new friend very interested in exploring Cairo with me, and I also walked the whole distance from Kalimat to my house.  It’s not a back walk at all.  Maybe just over a mile.  I think I am going to save a lot of money if I walk instead of taxi some days.  
She and I talked about our adventures studying abroad and our mutual friend and then went out to a restaurant.  I am very excited to learn my neighborhood and the local shops.  There is a lot around.  But one thing we didn’t find was a sweets shop.  I really wanted to find her a stand that sells sugarcane juice, or the taffy Egyptians make from molasses, both of which she has never tried.  I have found a “House of Doughnuts” near Kalimat though.  The slogan boasts “the finest American pastries.” I found the doughnuts average, but still doughnuts and so still a nice treat.
I find myself desperately wanting a plant.  I have my own house and a new life on my own.  I have proven to myself that I can take care of myself, so now I need something to take care of.  I have noticed several plant shops around.  I am hesitant to purchase a plant because I have a few weekend trips coming up, but I have convinced myself that any plant I buy here should to be able to withstand a few days without water.  What I REALLY want is a cactus, not because they are easy to take care of, but because I think they are fascinating and beautiful.  One of my peers seemed to know a place to get a cactus but it I didn’t know where he was talking about, maybe I’ll ask some Egyptian friends about it.  I have decided that my task for tomorrow is get a plant... and I really should do laundry too.