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Walk like an (Ancient) Egyptian
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hippocampus



Joined: 27 Feb 2012
Posts: 126
Location: Bikini Bottom

PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2012 7:40 am    Post subject: Walk like an (Ancient) Egyptian Reply with quote

If I were interested in seeing Ancient Egypt, the pyramids, good museums and what not, and generally devote my free time to Egyptology where would I best be advised to work as an ESL teacher in the country? I have fairly good qualifications, and would live modestly. Thanks.
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veiledsentiments



Joined: 20 Feb 2003
Posts: 15935
Location: USA

PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2012 2:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

With the current political upheaval, your timing is all wrong. Sad

What are your credentials? Experience?

VS
(I did what you want to do back in the mid-1980s. I applied for a Fellowship at The American University in Cairo and got a free MA in TEFL... while taking part in the many tours provided by the university, more on my own, and being able to audit Egyptology courses. It was a great three years, but Egypt is a different place now...)
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hippocampus



Joined: 27 Feb 2012
Posts: 126
Location: Bikini Bottom

PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2012 1:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Let's just say my background is quite adequate. I'd rather not allude to it on a public forum. Smile

You seem to think it's dangerous at present just to wander about. So are there no tours of the pyramids? Are museums not open? I wouldn't have though that things are so bad that a brown-haired, medium-complexioned, possibly foreign man couldn't just walk wherever he pleased. Am I mistaken?
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veiledsentiments



Joined: 20 Feb 2003
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Location: USA

PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2012 2:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Have tourists been attacked? No

Have expats been attacked? Only a few that went and got mixed up in the demonstrations... and only their camera(s) had permanent damage.

There have been some pretty brutal attacks on journalists... so don't look like one. Cool

But... the problem is that the expats that I know who got anywhere near the demos were long time ME hands who also spoke the language and even they had trouble knowing who was who... it is a very fluid situation. One can hopefully avoid them all. The next few years will probably have its ups and downs. I have been surprised at the number of long time expats (20-30 years) who had planned to retire in Egypt, who have pulled up stakes and left or are seriously considering leaving. I find that more telling than anything else.

Without knowing what you have to offer, I can offer you no help with the matter of jobs. You might be able to pick up jobs by knocking on doors of language schools and international schools. In 6-12 months, one can usually pick up enough private lessons on top of that to pay expenses. It would take some hustle on your part and street smarts to stay out of trouble.

But all of the tourist sites are safe and empty... good for seeing the sights in peace and quiet without lines.

VS
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hippocampus



Joined: 27 Feb 2012
Posts: 126
Location: Bikini Bottom

PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2012 7:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks. That's all good advice, and it is telling that long-termers are leaving. My secretiveness is not coyness so much as that I am not quite ready to embark. So I am not asking for help finding an actual job. Thanks again.
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justcolleen



Joined: 07 Jan 2004
Posts: 645
Location: Egypt, baby!

PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2012 10:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

hippocampus wrote:
You seem to think it's dangerous at present just to wander about. So are there no tours of the pyramids? Are museums not open? I wouldn't have though that things are so bad that a brown-haired, medium-complexioned, possibly foreign man couldn't just walk wherever he pleased. Am I mistaken?


There are three types of news:

1.) The western media reports, which focus almost exclusively on Tahrir protests. It's the laziest of journalism because there are protests in Tahrir on a daily basis.

2.) Egypt news, written in English for western consumption, meaning it tries to maintain the mirage - "Come to Egypt! Everything's fine!" These are the same dolts who put anyone who came through the Cairo airport and stayed more than 24 hours in the "tourist" category, and included more than half million Libyan refugees ... because they probably stayed in hotels ... in their latest "Tourism has recovered!" report.

3.) Egypt news, written in Arabic: carjackings, kidnappings, armed robberies, perpetual gun and ammunition / drug smuggling busts, and so on. Know that the perpetrator in every single instance reported is always caught, because they only report the cases where the perpetrator is caught. Remember, it's about the mirage.

Personally, I moved flats after there were 12 gun shot deaths and one kidnapping on my street over a two week period in February.

As for me, I don't wander anywhere, and I'm never outside after dark.
Come and wander around all you'd like, but know you'll be taking a risk. There is no police protection and the police that are in uniform direct traffic and then only in groups - because they're scared. The army can only do so much and, for now, they're busy getting ready for the elections starting tomorrow. And so am I, by making sure I have plenty of sterile drinking water, just in case.

My advice is to wait and see what happens from now through the end of June before you make any plans, professional or otherwise. By then, hopefully, there will be a president, a constitution, and security, Mubarak's verdict will be in, the Port Said massacre trial will be over, and things will settle down a little bit.
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veiledsentiments



Joined: 20 Feb 2003
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Location: USA

PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2012 2:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Although I was hoping that you would pass through with advice from the ground, I as so sorry to read this justcolleen. I've been following the news as closely as I can... mostly through friends still there who connect me to the more dependable news and blogs through Facebook. I lack confidence in the near term, but hope that the resilience that has keep Egypt going for centuries (millennia?) will again come back to the fore. For the moment, the urban Egypt we have known and loved for years is gone...

Stay Safe!!

VS
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justcolleen



Joined: 07 Jan 2004
Posts: 645
Location: Egypt, baby!

PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2012 5:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

veiledsentiments wrote:
Although I was hoping that you would pass through with advice from the ground, I as so sorry to read this justcolleen. I've been following the news as closely as I can... mostly through friends still there who connect me to the more dependable news and blogs through Facebook. I lack confidence in the near term, but hope that the resilience that has keep Egypt going for centuries (millennia?) will again come back to the fore. For the moment, the urban Egypt we have known and loved for years is gone...

Stay Safe!!

VS


Eh, I'll be alright. My friends and family think I'm magnoona for sticking it out, but I've been here long enough to have a solid support system.

Besides, I was raised northeast of Detroit and spent a lot of time in the city, which helps. Exclamation
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hippocampus



Joined: 27 Feb 2012
Posts: 126
Location: Bikini Bottom

PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2012 1:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you both. Hmm. It looks like I better not come just yet, but bonehead that I am VS, I neglected to ask what cities are good for the ESL teacher *beep* amateur Egyptology? Cairo, Alexandria (though I've heard the library has burnt down!) Thebes? Is that even a modern city or a ruin in the desert? Luxor? I really have no idea what Egypt is like. I also heard that garbage is rampant in the streets. Is that true?
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PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2012 3:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cairo and Alex are the places with the jobs. Not much to be found elsewhere...

You have time to do a bit of research on Ancient Egypt. In fact, I recommend it. Otherwise you won't appreciate what you are seeing.

Luxor is the modern town that has enclosed most of Thebes - pretty much all that is left is two massive temples that cover acres. And across the Nile (by ferry) is the Valley of the Kings with its tombs and more temple ruins. About all that is to be found in the deserts are pyramids and tombs - up around Cairo.

And yes... there is garbage in the streets... even worse now that the systems are in turmoil, I expect. But I must admit that after a month or two, you don't even notice it. It just is what it is...

VS
(Laughing you got "beeped" - always funny when it is unintentional...)
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hippocampus



Joined: 27 Feb 2012
Posts: 126
Location: Bikini Bottom

PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2012 3:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I did get beeped! Laughing As you can guess, I used an alternative spelling for the present tense of came. It's Latin: some might find it prudish to censor Latin, but it isn't proper English, so who can blame them!
Yes. Thanks again, VS. I sometimes lok at ancient Egypt maps and sometimes at modern, hence ( and I now see the problem precisely) m confusion of Luxor and Thebes. It's a shame there is no work in Luxor, but I suppose Cairo would have most of the museums??

BTW, this thread with your black kitty (I almost used the 'P word') and my pink seahorse is ever so visually pleasing, don't you think?
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Location: USA

PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2012 2:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Definitely HC... very artistic and all.

As to our little censor... he seems unable to look at context and always assumes the worst of us. Cool

VS
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justcolleen



Joined: 07 Jan 2004
Posts: 645
Location: Egypt, baby!

PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2012 5:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

hippocampus wrote:
\Hmm. It looks like I better not come just yet?


From yesterday's New York Times:

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/05/23/world/middleeast/on-eve-of-historic-egyptian-vote-crime-wave-is-the-main-topic.html?src=un&feedurl=http%3A%2F%2Fjson8.nytimes.com%2Fpages%2Fworld%2Fmiddleeast%2Findex.jsonp


On Eve of Egyptian Vote, Crime Wave Is the Main Topic

CAIRO — Parts of the ring road encircling this capital are dangerous no man’s lands, unsafe to drive on, by day or night. Kidnappings and bank robberies are common around the city. And women report sexual assaults by taxi drivers, even in broad daylight.

Across Egypt, carjackers have grown so bold that they steal their victims’ cellphones and tell them to call to negotiate the return of the cars. And in Sharqiya, a rural province in the Nile Delta, villagers have taken the law into their own hands, mutilating and burning the bodies of accused thugs and hanging them from lampposts.


It wouldn't hurt to wait.
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PostPosted: Thu May 24, 2012 1:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

HC and I have PMed with a better option for now... Cool

VS
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hippocampus



Joined: 27 Feb 2012
Posts: 126
Location: Bikini Bottom

PostPosted: Thu May 24, 2012 2:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks JC. A very informative article that. You may have saved my miserable ESL-teaching life.I am grateful

I have read your latest missive VS. I hadn't noticed my second beeper. (It was the short form of that words that means 'a bundle of sticks). I don't think it is a person, but a program that censors seemingly offensive words.

I think I'll PM you again now on another matter. See you.
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