We've been in Cairo for a few days now and I need to start blogging before I forget everything. I've kind of lost all track of time. Jet lag is brutal. The plane ride was rough but we made it along with all of our luggage. My parents' house is absolutely beautiful. It feels like a luxury hotel. For the record, we never had houses like this when I was growing up. I'm trying to figure out who all the servants are and trying to familiarize the boys with them. The important ones are Mohammed, Sayid and Su-su. Important to me because between the three of them, we've been well-fed, well-slept and well-kept. Dishes and dirty clothes disappear and then magically reappear fresh and clean. When Su-su found out that Booker has been a little sick with diarrhea and vomitting, she disappeared down the street and reappeared with two types of medicine for him (no prescription necessary and all under $3). When Booker turned his nose up at Koshary for lunch, Su-su appeared out of no where with two cooked hot dogs. I almost told her that I never actually cook his hot dogs, but I was too embarassed. It's quite strange to not think at all about cooking, cleaning and laundry. I just might get used to it :)My parents live in the neighborhood of Zamalek, which is an island in the middle of the Nile. How awesome is that? Pretty awesome. I've only been here a few days and I haven't gone too far outside of Zamalek but I've made a few observations about Cairo. It's big, it's dirty and there are no rules here. I've never been to a city so large. It frightens me a little bit. I live in a rural farming neighborhood in Southern Arizona. Cairo is twice the size of New York City. There are people and cars everywhere you go, whatever time of day or night. I've also never seen so much garbage in my life. And we haven't even been to Garbage City yet. And as for the rules, as far as I can tell, there are none. Try telling a three year old (whose entire life back home is about rules) that he doesn't have to use a carseat or even a seat belt. That he doesn't have to wait in line as long as he's got baksheesh. That he can throw his trash on the ground because there are no trash cans. It's complete madness.
So far I haven't gone anywhere without my dad and his security detail which has been quite nice. I haven't had to worry about catching a cab, paying the right person the right amount of baksheesh or trying to communicate without any Arabic. I hope I gain the confidence to start going out on my own. As soon as I figure out how to get pictures off my camera I'll blog about our trip to a local grotto/aquarium where half the fish were in bottles of formaldehyde. Also coming soon, our trip the Cairo Zoo where Booker and Ike were as interesting to the Egyptians as the animals and where I saw too many rules broken to speak of and really, the zoo should not be a place where rules are broken- Madam, want to hold a baby lion? Sure, why not!