24 February, 2010

Over the River and Through the Desert, to Siwa Oasis We Go!

In 8 hours almost exactly from this moment in time, I will be on a bus heading to Siwa. I'm both excited and terrified, as this trip is full of both historical sites and desert excursions and 10 hour bus rides. I think that's what I'm dreading the most...the 10 hours I get to spend on the bus with the other students on my program. This could either be a good thing or a bad thing...we shall see tomorrow. 

In the meantime though, I'm almost packed and ready to tackle the weekend ahead. The itinerary looks amazing and I definitely think the thing I'm looking forward to the most is "sandboarding" during our day of desert excursions. 

I will update more about the happenings of this weekend when I return as I'm still unsure at this point if I want to bring my laptop with me. And then even if I do bring the laptop, whether or not I will have internet is still in question. So, you know. Just one of those things. 

In other news, this week has been pretty relaxed I've been hanging out with more of the kids in my program and some of the Egyptians that I've met. They seem to like me a lot. The concept of friendship here is also a much different one than friendship in America, but I'll elaborate at some other point. I've also went to classes and I decided what I'm going to write my first "Customs and Habits" (this is the name of a class I'm taking, just as a reference) paper on. I find it to be a pretty stereotypical "becky"-esque paper topic. I'm going to compare the burial rites and rituals of the Ancient Egyptian society to that of the current modern day American culture. If nothing else, I get to write about cemeteries and funerals. Cool, right?

This week wasn't as exhausting as past weeks, which was surprising as I definitely did more. Sunday consisted of class and then hanging out, and Monday was 12 hours of class with a few breaks sprinkled here and there. Tuesday was cleaning around the apartment, followed by watching Sweeney Todd with Mustafa and Mahmoud, followed by class, then a scheduled AMIDEAST movie night and then some Death Note with Salah and Mustafa and chili with everyone else. Tonight was pretty relaxing to as I had class and then a guest lecture on human rights and then packing. 

The movie night we had on Monday was rather interesting. It was called Desert in the Coffeehouse and pretty much the filmmaker just went around to coffeehouses in Minnesota and asked what people thought about the Middle East. You got a variety of ranges which just goes to show how much and how little the American people know about the Middle East. The discussion we had after the movie with the Egyptians was pretty interesting, but I don't think that I want to really talk politics with any of them...it just makes me angry. That's probably why I decided on International Communication as my specialization in IR and not anything else. Media I can do, other stuff makes me mad or apathetic. 

The lecture we had today was also pretty interesting, but I do wish the gentleman would have explained more on the human rights breaches here in Egypt, instead of focusing on the upcoming election and controversy surrounding that. 

Ok, I feel like I'm rambling now. I think that means time to make sure everything is fully packed, and then time for bed. The adventure is unfolding before your very eyes. Don't go anywhere!

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