This time I am far, far gone — way out. Busses, taxis, and shuttles could barely reach me to snatch me back from the void, if just to turn around and thrust me back into reality.
Past the mountains, through windy highways; just me and the coastline to my left, desert to my right.
Kum Kum: a secluded beach bungalow on the Red Sea’s shoreline. The places along the water are usually run by Bedouins, a nomadic people of the Middle Eastern deserts. These are people who thrive on providing hospitality to any visitor that may come their way.
The Egyptian flags swaying with every passing gust, an occasional clunking of gears being shifted on a commercial truck, Saudi Arabia slowly moving into focus across the waterway.
Peace and serenity.
Those awakened ideals can be found here; right here, in the middle of the world.
Right where it all began.
All is not well in this part of the world, and nor has it ever been. There are still many issues troubling northern African countries and their surrounding neighbors: war, famine, poverty, disease, Sally Struthers.
This is still — technically speaking — the Middle East.
But for that brief moment in time, as I looked out at the Red Sea with a cool Arab breeze sweeping through my scruffy blonde hair, the world felt alright. A place that I had never dreamt of until now had opened a spot for me. And come what may, I was in the continent of Africa; sitting on a beach located in the southern Sinai Peninsula; in Egypt.
And can I just say that the days seem long but all so much more vibrant with life.
Time just moves on a much slower liner scale here. Everything, for that matter, moves a little more slowly.
Once you get by the basic shock of being in physical and emotional paradise. Well, you start to see the world as a different place.
I would not advise to visit this land if you are the more naive and ignorant westerner: There is Arabic spoken, the people here do adhere to Muslim standards, and there will be those crazy, yet enchanting, songs on the loud speaker.
My rambling seems to have went on a little longer than usual… What’s in this tea? That couldn’t have been tobacco in that paper I inhaled. And, shit! Why is the rum gone?
It’s all ok, Logan. Just look at the stars. Look at all of them.
And, boy. I have never seen a more eloquently beautiful sight. It is like I could pick a twinkling star from the sky like a tomato, fresh off the vine.
This is the Middle East and it’s not. it’s a lusciously seductive taste of culture that will, for the most part, Leave you blissfully blown away.
The above was written days before I would learn of the horrid attack on a bus of Egyptian Coptic Christians in the city of Cairo.
The above was selfishly written far from the evil that the world seems to have to endure almost daily.
Egypt, and specially, the people on the Sinai Peninsula, welcomed me into their homeland with open arms.
The driver that had taken me to my little seaside getaway waited for me at the border when I was leaving (he was late so his brother picked me up). He waited for me and my travel partner to bid us farewell.
This was about an hour before I would first hear of the tragedy that had fallen on Egypt. The last words this man told me as I stepped across the border were, “this is your home now”.
A piece of my heart will always reside in Egypt, and for now, the rest of my heart is with them as well.
Maybe not all is good in the world.
Bad things happen to good people daily.
What is the right mindset to have? Do we respond to violence and pure evil with compassion and peace or more violence and anger?
I really don’t know anymore; but I hope for the sake of the world that we figure out the answer soon.