I lived my entire life away from a country that I felt so incredibly attached to and never truly understood the reason for that attachement until I was older. As a child I would visit Cairo every summer and would be mesmerized by the sites and sounds and the organized chaos the city was known for. Although people honked their horns while singing to a song on the radio and talking on their cellphones and signalling a left turn with their free hand and finally giving directions to passersby, everyone agreed to a certain set of unwritten rules on the road and in life.
As I grew older I became more and more curious about this country, I read about it and tried to understand it's very complex history; with every bit of information I gathered a fire in my heart was fuelled with love for my country. I felt the need to defend it constantly and parade my culture in front of anyone and everyone I met. I put flags on the window instead of a curtain to make sure the neighbours all knew we were egyptian. There were stickers on the car and trinkets on the rearview mirror and a pride in my heart that grows with every passing day.
After spending a year there, I truly fell in love. I finally had an opportunity to live as a real egyptian and not simply a khawaga or canadian as everyone would refer to me as. I drove alongside them, got stuck in traffic with them and began joking like them. I loved it. I finally felt I had completed my soul searching quest when I quenched the thirst my soul felt for a taste of Egypt.
Today my people have done what no other nation on the planet can say its done before; they saved our country. Thanks to the sacrifices of many egyptians who left their jobs and families to protest in Tahrir Square, we will be able to enjoy freedom and democracy in our beautiful land of the Pharaohs. Watching the news today, I would have given anything to be out there in the crowd in Tahrir Square along side my brothers and sisters, chanting with them and supporting them. I can say I was there in spirit and joined in local protests here, I hope I helped you somehow. I'm sure you felt our international support.
From an egyptian abroad to my home, thank you for speaking on my behalf, thank you for making me proud of who I am and having me carry my culture with joy and knowing that it was the egyptians that didn't surrender, they never gave up the fight and they will never ever let their voices go in vain ever again.
An egyptian abroad.