And now a happy post from last week

What a fantastic Thursday!

When the clock stuck midnight on Wednesday miraculously changing the world to the realm of Thursday I was at a Nubian wedding.  My friend Cassidy studied abroad with me the first time around and now she’s back for this semester's AMIDEAST program. She and I were invited to this wedding by my old Arabic teachers.  We arrived at the wedding scheduled to start at 10 at 9:30, but nothing happened until 30 minutes before Thursday.  It was quite an experience.  I believe Nubian Egyptians may be even more chill than Arab Egyptians.  Egyptians weddings consist of a “zuffa” which is a traditional little musical parade with the bride and groom, the “kbt elkitab” which is the official signing of the marriage contract, and then there is the “faraH” literally meaning “happy” which is the wedding party.  This Nubian wedding did all three at this one event.  I thought it was interesting that the music of the zuffa was substantially more more African sounding than the Arab zuffa I have seen.  It was a long but fun night.  I got home at two am.

Later that morning began our last day of orientation.  After our last course of survival Arabic, we went out in teams on an across Cairo scavenger hunt.  It was so much fun.  SO MUCH FUN.  We had a list of tasks that took us on a scavenger hunt around the city.  It was FAN-FLIPPIN-TASTIC.  I was really forced to use my Arabic, and I was pleasantly surprised to find I had learned quite a lot this summer.  Guess which team won.... MINE OF COURSE.  We won dinner out with our program director, and he’s awesome, so that will be great.  Here are pictures from our tasks:

After that exhausting adventure the evening was devoted to bonding with my new peers.  I went out to dinner with a 5 of the kids who live in my apartment building.  We found a fantastic little hole in the wall Sudanese restaurant right near our apartment.  Sudanese food is a lot like Ethiopian food, and it is served with a very similar flat spongy bread.  The woman who cooks and runs the restaurant could tell we had no idea what to order so she provided us with a variety of fantastic flavorful dishes.  She gave us her card, and we plan on becoming regulars.  Now I have a local Sudanese and Yemeni restaurant within walking distance from my house!

After a quick stop at a disappointing over-priced “nice” cafe with juice and rice pudding, we returned to our apartment building.  This probably isn’t as exciting to hear about second-hand, but I thought it was so exciting: we all hung out and had tons of fun just chatting it up late into the night!  I am just so happy we all gel as well as we do, and can talk without inhibition or awkwardness.  And I mean everyone!  It’s lovely :)

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