Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi, President

Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi, President
New President of Egypt, 8 June 2014

watching a bad era end

watching a bad era end
nighmare 2012-2013

23 Dec. 2011

23 Dec. 2011
My beloved beautiful Mama, I miss you.

The Vatican

The Vatican
my photography - July 2011

Mama and I

Mama and I

Life of Flowers

2009

2009
The year before at TGFriday, for Mom's bday

Cairo

JULY-AUGUST 2011 EVENTS

JULY-AUGUST 2011 EVENTS

Barcelona, Spain

Barcelona, Spain
22 - 26 July 2011

Rome, Italy

Rome, Italy
26 - 29 July 2011

JULY-AUGUST BIRTHDAYS!

JULY-AUGUST BIRTHDAYS!

Farida, Farah, Nariman 23 Sep. 2010

Farida, Farah, Nariman 23 Sep. 2010
Nariman's 5 on 31 July, twins 7 on 23 Sep. 2011

Eid El-Adha

Eid El-Adha

SEPTEMBER-OCTOBER BIRTHDAYS!

SEPTEMBER-OCTOBER BIRTHDAYS!

Yasmine on 2nd Sep., I on 20 Oct.

Yasmine on 2nd Sep., I on 20 Oct.
Yasmine and I in Spain - and then Italy! July 2011

Funny Animation

READ ALL ABOUT IT!

READ ALL ABOUT IT!

Prayers

Athan (azan)

LOOK!

LOOK!
Look down on your left, at the huge directory!

Useful Telephone & Address Directory

Useful Telephone & Address Directory
Look far down, on your left....

Tourism, Travel

Tourism, Travel

Interviews

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dancers, choreographers, editors, inventors,

Anger Management

Stress Management

What's Up, Doc?!

What's Up, Doc?!
Read all about REAL medical problems - and solutions!

Good Relationships

Good Relationships
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Getting Closer to Your Kids...

Domestic Violence

Domestic Violence
All Children Deserve to be Happy & Safe

Health & Nutrition

Health & Nutrition

Consume Good Food, Not Medicine!

Hot Stuff For Adults!

Hot Stuff For Adults!

'Hallal' Relationships

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Business Know-How
Corporate & Business Tips soon follows!

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Time Management

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How To's...
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Walk, sprint, jog or run, for good health!

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Dance & Ballet

The 7 Wonders of the World

The 7 Wonders of the World

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Filing Systems
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Coming Soon....

Coming Soon....
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DON'T MISS THIS!

DON'T MISS THIS!

Beauty Tips

Beauty Tips

Escavations, Egyptology

Escavations, Egyptology
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Industrial Safety Tips
Read also safety against terrorism in "How Safe is Your Hotel?"

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Entertainment!

Hits Counter

Evolution of Dance

Elvis Presley - Suspicious Mind (1970)

Elvis - Suspicious Minds

ta-da!

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Start reading from HERE, or choose from the Index!

12 December 2008

Some Malls and Shopping Centers





Some Shopping Malls and Centers

Akkad Mall
Nasr Road, Nasr City Tel: 2419-4247 Open: 11am-midnight. A spacious mall with two floors packed full with shops, a bowling centre, a video games arcade, two restaurants and a parking facility.

Arkadia Mall
Corniche El Nil, Downtown Tel: 2579-2082 Open: 11am-midnight. One of Cairo's well known malls. Across five floors there're shops, an amusement arcade for children (Fun Planet) and a food court with some ten restaurants. Famous brands like Adidas, Timberland are open as well as lesser known local ones. Parking available.

Bandar Mall
9 Palestine Rd, Maadi Tel: 2519-0455 Open: 11 am - midnightMore of an entertainment complex than a shopping one with three cinemas, a large bowling centre, a billiards place and several local and international food chains.

City Centre
Makram Ebeid St., Nasr City Tel: 2273-8855 Open: 10am-12:30pmA medium sized mall with five shopping levels, four cinemas and a few cafes / restaurants! Nice and elegant. shopping levels, four cinemas and a few cafes / restaurants! Nice and elegant.

City Centre (Carrefour)
Ring Road Maadi, Maadi Tel: 2520-4300/200 / Call centre: 16061 Open: 10 am-midnight / Fridays: 2pm-midnight Built outside the city periphery and famous for its hypermarket
Carrefour, this mall has a large number of boutiques and stores, and Magic Planet - an amusement arcade for children. It also holds a food court with six outlets and parking for 1,200 cars.

City Stars
2 Riyad At Hashed St.. Nasr City Tel: 2480-0500/ 55 open: 11am - 1pmAlready well known through out the country for boasting some of the top-notch international brands like Women's Secret, Morgan, Kookai, Red Earth, Mango and others; this mall with its brilliant shopping experience. Accessories and designer clothes on the first two floors, a Khan Al Khalili walk-through area, a Spinneys hypermarket, an international exhibition area, Magic Galaxy Park for kids, 16 wide screen cinemas, a wide range of coffee shops such as Cilantro, Cinnabon and Costa cafe. Not to mention a large food court which includes the usual suspects like Pizza Hut, McDonald's and Gellataria Roma as well as Chinese and Italian eateries.

Dandy Mall
Km 28, Cairo-Alex Desert Rd. Tel: 2539-2606 Call centre: 16061 Open: 0:30 am - 1 amThis shopping mall is set to become one of the city's largest. It features a 12-screen cinema complex, food court, department stores and shops, a gaming arcade and the largest branch of the Carrefour hypermarket in Egypt. There's also a petrol station for those driving onto Alexandria and the usually fast-food stops like KFC and McDonalds.

Degla Arcade
11 Hassan Sabri St., Zamalek Open: 10:30am-9pmThough small in size this shopping centre boasts some delightfully small but absolutelythe best boutiques in town for lingerie, jewelry, antiques, furniture and home accessories. There's also a hairdresser tucked into the building if you care for a touch-up.

El Horreya Mall
Al-Ahram St., Heliopolis Tel: 2452-1698 Open 10am-11:30pmA small mall boasting five levels of a variety of shops, two cinemas and two restaurants.First Mall35 Giza St., Giza Tel: 3571-7803 16 Open: 9am-midnight & 11am-11pm (winter) One of the classiest malls in Cairo. Three floors of the finest shops and international brands, including Bulgari, Villar, Damas, Polo, Carlo Jewelry. On the ground floor, 'La Gourmandise' offers the finest French pastries and Mediterranean cuisine where they also occasionally host fashion shows and events.

First Mall Shopping Mall
Florida MallSheikh AH Gad El Haq St., Masaken Sheraton, Heliopolis Tel: 268-4295 15005 Open: noon-midnightA small shopping mall with a few facilities. Five levels of shopping, two cinemas, a foodcourt with six restaurants and four cafes. Harris and Lipstick cafes are on the ground floor.

Galleria
Grand Hyatt Cairo, Corniche El Nil, Garden City Tel: 365-1234 Open: 10am-10pmThe Galleria offers the ultimate shopping and entertainment experience together with a stunning view of the Nile. Featuring 7 floors of retail outlets and entertainment facilities including cinemas, a multipurpose auditorium, boutiques and a food court. Some of the famous brands for your shopping pleasure are Mont Blanc, Chopard, Palait de Parfume, Baraka Optics, Felopateer, Mobaco and Concrete.

Genena Mall
Batarawi St., off Abbas El Akkad St., Nasr City Tel: 404-6261/3 14 Open: noon-midnight. One of the largest malls in Cairo, consisting of five floors of shopping boutiques for clothing, furniture, upholstery, shoes and perfumeries as well as several cinemas on the first and third floors. There is also a skating arena.

Maadi Grand Mall (MGM)
Road 250, Maadi Tel: 519-5380 Open: 11am-11pm (Thursday till midnight)Five floors of shopping, a large hall for billiards and video games, MGM cinema complex, and four restaurants.

Nile Hilton Annex
Corniche El Nil, Downtown Tel: 578-0444 Open: 9am-9pmA two-leveled mall with a wide variety of shops, a cafe, two restaurants, a billiard room, and an internet cafe. Parking available.

Ramses Hilton Annex
Corniche El Nil, Downtown Tel: 575-2025 Open: 10am-10pmA seven-floor mall with shops for clothes, jewelry, makeup, upholstery, shoes and music, three cinemas on the top floor, three restaurants, two billiard and snooker halls offering alcoholic beverages while you play, and a McDonald's. Can get pretty crowded during the summer. Parking available and is redeemable if you attend a movie.

Serag Mall
Atteya El-Sawalhy St., Nasr City Tel: 406-0555 Open: 11am-2amSpread across four floors of three different buildings, with a total of 400 shops. There are also five cinemas, 13 restaurants in addition to six chain restaurants outside the mall.

Tiba Mall
El Nasr Road, Nasr City Tel: 402-9072 / 6 Open: 7am-midnight. A small mall with two floors of shopping facilities, bowling and billiard halls, three restaurants, two cinemas, and parking.

Wonderland
Abbas El Akkad St., Nasr City Tel: 401-8834 Open: 11am-11pm. A relatively small shopping mall, but the cinemas and amusement arcade are quite favourable. Three floors of shopping, two cafes, a fast food outlet, bowling and billiard halls, and a Shoprite supermarket.

World Trade Centre (WTC)
191 Corniche El Nil, Downtown Tel: 580-4000 Open: l0 am-I0pmA food court and a bowling alley. (The cinema operates seasonally and severalshops have closed down - call before heading there.)

Yamama Centre
3 Taha Hussein St., Zamalek Tel: 736-1583/ 00/400 Open: 9am-11pmOne of the oldest shopping malls in Cairo with eight levels of shopping, a cafe, a pastry shop and a hair dresser. One of the city's best gyms, FDA, is also based inside the mall.

h.n.

The Tale of the Wooden Bowl



The Tale of the Wooden Bowl


I guarantee you will remember the tale of the Wooden Bowl tomorrow, a week from now, a month from now, a year from now.


A frail old man went to live with his son, daughter-in-law, and four-year - old grandson. The old man's hands trembled, his eyesight was blurred, and his step faltered. The family ate together at the table. But the elderly grandfather's shaky hands and failing sight made eating difficult. Peas rolled off his spoon onto the floor. When he grasped the glass, milk spilled on the tablecloth.

The son and daughter-in-law became irritated with the mess. 'We must do something about father,' said the son. 'I've had enough of his spilled milk, noisy eating, and food on the floor.'

So the husband and wife set a small table in the corner. There, Grandfather ate alone while the rest of the family enjoyed dinner. Since Grandfather had broken a dish or two, his food was served in a wooden bowl.

When the family glanced in Grandfather's direction, sometimes he had a tear in his eye as he sat alone. Still, the only words the couple had for him were sharp admonitions when he dropped a fork or spilled food. The four-year-old watched it all in silence.

One evening before supper, the father noticed his son playing with wood scraps on the floor. He asked the child sweetly, 'What are you making?' Just as sweetly, the boy responded, 'Oh, I am making a little bowl for you and Mama to eat your food in when I grow up.' The four-year-old smiled and went back to work.

The words so struck the parents so that they were speechless. Then tears started to stream down their cheeks. Though no word was spoken, both knew what must be done.

That evening the husband took Grandfather's hand and gently led him back to the family table.

For the remainder of his days he ate every meal with the family. And for some reason, neither husband nor wife seemed to care any longer when a fork was dropped, milk spilled, or the tablecloth soiled. On a positive note, I've learned that, no matter what happens, how bad it seems today, life does go on, and it will be better tomorrow.

I've learned that you can tell a lot about a person by the way he/she handles four things: a rainy day, the elderly, lost luggage, and tangled Christmas tree lights.

I've learned that, regardless of your relationship with your parents, you'll miss them when they're gone from your life.

I've learned that making a 'living' is not the same thing as making a 'life..' I've learned that life sometimes gives you a second chance.

I've learned that you shouldn't go through life with a catcher's mitt on both hands. You need to be able to throw something back.

I've learned that if you pursue happiness, it will elude you. But, if you focus on your family, your friends, the needs of others, your work and doing the very best you can, happiness will find you


I've learned that whenever I decide something with an open heart, I usually make the right decision.

I've learned that even when I have pains, I don't have to be one.

I've learned that every day, you should reach out and touch someone. People love that human touch -- holding hands, a warm hug, or just a friendly pat on the back.
I've learned that I still have a lot to learn.

I've learned that you should pass this on to everyone you care about. I just did.

I am not going to be the one who lets it die. I found it believable -- angels have walked beside me all my life--and they still do ************ This is to all of you who mean something to me, I pray for your happiness.

The Candle of Love, Hope & Friendship.


This candle was lit on the 15th of September, 1998.

Someone who loves you has helped keep it alive by sending it to you. Don't let The Candle of Love, Hope and Friendship die

Send this message to all of your friends and everyone you love!

May God richly bless you!


h.n.

The Parable of the Spoons


The Parable of The Spoons
(A Beautiful Story)


A holy man was having a conversation with the Lord one day and said, "Lord, I would like to know what Heaven and Hell are like. "The Lord led the holy man to two doors.


He opened one of the doors and the holy man looked in. In the middle of the room was a large round table. In the middle of the table was a large pot of stew which smelled delicious and made the holy man's mouth water.


The people sitting around the table were thin and sickly. They appeared to be famished. They were holding spoons with very long handles and each found it possible to reach into the pot of stew and take a spoonful, but because the handle was longer than their arms, they could not get the spoons back into their mouths.. The holy man shuddered at the sight of their misery and suffering. The Lord said, "You have seen Hell."


They went to the next room and opened the door. It was exactly the same as the first one. There was the large round table with the large pot of stew which made the holy man's mouth water. The people were equipped with the same long-handled spoons, but here the people were well nourished and plump, laughing and talking. The holy man said, "I don't understand."


It is simple" said the Lord, "it requires but one skill. You see, they have learned to feed each other. While the greedy think only of themselves.
h.n.

24 November 2008

Bad Summer for Egypt!







Bad 2008 Summer for Egypt!

BAD AUGUST, BAD SEPTEMBER CRISES

Egypt abduction talks 'ongoing'

Egypt says negotiations are still ongoing to secure the release of 19 people abducted in southern Egypt.

A cabinet spokesman said that an earlier announcement by the foreign minister that they had been freed and were safe and well was premature. The group includes five Italians, five Germans and a Romanian, along with eight Egyptians.

The government says they were taken across the border into Sudan, and the hostage takers have demanded a ransom. The 19 were seized near the Gilf al-Kebir plateau, close to the Libyan and Sudanese borders.

Foreign Minister Ahmed Abul Gheit originally reported their release ahead of a meeting with US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice in New York.

He said the hostages were "safe and sound".

But the cabinet spokesman, Magdy Radi, later said: "It is premature to say they are released. The negotiations are still continuing."

Tour owner's call

Egyptian officials say contact has been made with the kidnappers in Sudan, and that they are seeking a ransom of up to $6m (£3.24m).

The tourism ministry said those abducted along with the foreigners were two guides, four drivers, a guard and the owner of the travel company who had organised the excursion.

Gilf al-Kebir is a giant plateau famous for its prehistoric cave paintings, which featured in the 1996 film The English Patient.

The BBC's Ian Pannell in Cairo says local guides have indicated that the Gilf al-Kebir area has become increasingly unsafe this year.

Another group of foreigners was held at gunpoint in February and three of their vehicles were taken.

An investigation at the time pointed the blame at smugglers and bandits. There has been criticism that the Egyptian military has not done enough to patrol the area despite the increased threat.


Tourist abduction blow for Mubarak

As 11 European tourists are abducted in south-west Egypt, the BBC's Arab affairs analyst Magdi Abdelhadi assesses the likely fall out of the incident.

Tourism matters a lot for the Egyptian economy. It brings in some $8bn (£4.3bn) a year, which is more than 6% of the country's gross domestic product.

One of the most likely consequences of a kidnap incident like this is that it will dent Egypt's reputation as a safe destination for foreign tourists.

It is thought that five Italians, five Germans and a Romanian were taken along with eight Egyptian travel guides and drivers last Friday.

The abduction is believed to have taken place near the Gilf al-Kebir plateau in southern Egypt.
Unconfirmed reports say the hostages have been taken across the border into Sudan.

The Egyptian tourism minister says negotiations are under way to secure their release.

Bad News

Whatever the motives of the kidnappers, be they political or just criminal, there is no doubt that the incident is a serious blow to the administration of President Hosni Mubarak.

The kidnap comes at the end of a period of bad news for Mr Mubarak's government that has prompted growing calls for a change of leadership inside Egypt.

Mr Mubarak has been in power for nearly 30 years. His critics will see the kidnapping of foreign tourists as yet another example of government failure, despite the exceptional powers given to the police and the enormous resources allocated to security.

Earlier this month, the authorities were accused of responding slowly to a massive rock slide at a shanty town near Cairo that killed more than 100 people.

And before that, the city's fire brigade failed to extinguish a blaze that destroyed a historic building (actually AN OLD PALACE used for the parliaments) in central Cairo housing the upper chamber of parliament.


H.N.

22 November 2008

The First Thanksgiving


The First Thanksgiving


In 1621, the Plymouth colonists and Wampanoag Indians shared an autumn harvest feast which is acknowledged today as one of the first Thanksgiving celebrations in the colonies. This harvest meal has become a symbol of cooperation and interaction between English colonists and Native Americans. Although this feast is considered by many to the very first Thanksgiving celebration, it was actually in keeping with a long tradition of celebrating the harvest and giving thanks for a successful bounty of crops. Native American groups throughout the Americas, including the Pueblo, Cherokee, Creek and many others organized harvest festivals, ceremonial dances, and other celebrations of thanks for centuries before the arrival of Europeans in North America.
Historians have also recorded other ceremonies of thanks among European settlers in North America, including British colonists in Berkeley Plantation, Virginia. At this site near the Charles River in December of 1619, a group of British settlers led by Captain John Woodlief knelt in prayer and pledged "Thanksgiving" to God for their healthy arrival after a long voyage across the Atlantic. This event has been acknowledged by some scholars and writers as the official first Thanksgiving among European settlers on record. Whether at Plymouth, Berkeley Plantation, or throughout the Americas, celebrations of thanks have held great meaning and importance over time. The legacy of thanks, and particularly of the feast, have survived the centuries as people throughout the United States gather family, friends, and enormous amounts of food for their yearly Thanksgiving meal.

What Was Actually on the Menu?

What foods topped the table at the first harvest feast? Historians aren't completely certain about the full bounty, but it's safe to say the pilgrims weren't gobbling up pumpkin pie or playing with their mashed potatoes. Following is a list of the foods that were available to the colonists at the time of the 1621 feast. However, the only two items that historians know for sure were on the menu are venison and wild fowl, which are mentioned in primary sources. The most detailed description of the "First Thanksgiving" comes from Edward Winslow from A Journal of the Pilgrims at Plymouth, in 1621:

"Our harvest being gotten in, our governor sent four men on fowling, that so we might after a special manner rejoice together after we had gathered the fruit of our labors. They four in one day killed as much fowl as, with a little help beside, served the company almost a week. At which time, among other recreations, we exercised our arms, many of the Indians coming amongst us, and among the rest their greatest king Massasoit, with some ninety men, whom for three days we entertained and feasted, and they went out and killed five deer, which they brought to the plantation and bestowed upon our governor, and upon the captain, and others. And although it be not always so plentiful as it was at this time with us, yet by the goodness of God, we are so far from want that we often wish you partakers of our plenty."

Did you know that lobster, seal and swans were on the Pilgrims' menu? Seventeenth Century Table Manners: The pilgrims didn't use forks; they ate with spoons, knives, and their fingers. They wiped their hands on large cloth napkins which they also used to pick up hot morsels of food. Salt would have been on the table at the harvest feast, and people would have sprinkled it on their food. Pepper, however, was something that they used for cooking but wasn't available on the table.

In the seventeenth century, a person's social standing determined what he or she ate. The best food was placed next to the most important people. People didn't tend to sample everything that was on the table (as we do today), they just ate what was closest to them. Serving in the seventeenth century was very different from serving today. People weren't served their meals individually. Foods were served onto the table and then people took the food from the table and ate it. All the servers had to do was move the food from the place where it was cooked onto the table.

Pilgrims didn't eat in courses as we do today. All of the different types of foods were placed on the table at the same time and people ate in any order they chose. Sometimes there were two courses, but each of them would contain both meat dishes, puddings, and sweets.

More Meat, Less Vegetables

Our modern Thanksgiving repast is centered around the turkey, but that certainly wasn't the case at the pilgrims' feasts. Their meals included many different meats. Vegetable dishes, one of the main components of our modern celebration, didn't really play a large part in the feast mentality of the seventeenth century. Depending on the time of year, many vegetables weren't available to the colonists.

The pilgrims probably didn't have pies or anything sweet at the harvest feast. They had brought some sugar with them on the Mayflower but by the time of the feast, the supply had dwindled. Also, they didn't have an oven so pies and cakes and breads were not possible at all. The food that was eaten at the harvest feast would have seemed fatty by 1990's standards, but it was probably more healthy for the pilgrims than it would be for people today. The colonists were more active and needed more protein. Heart attack was the least of their worries. They were more concerned about the plague and chickenpox.

Surprisingly Spicy Cooking

People tend to think of English food at bland, but, in fact, the pilgrims used many spices, including cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, pepper, and dried fruit, in sauces for meats. In the seventeenth century, cooks did not use proportions or talk about teaspoons and tablespoons. Instead, they just improvised. The best way to cook things in the seventeenth century was to roast them. Among the pilgrims, someone was assigned to sit for hours at a time and turn the spit to make sure the meat was evenly done.

Since the pilgrims and Wampanoag Indians had no refrigeration in the seventeenth century, they tended to dry a lot of their foods to preserve them. They dried Indian corn, hams, fish, and herbs.

Dinner for Breakfast: Pilgrim Meals: The biggest meal of the day for the colonists was eaten at noon and it was called ‘noonmeat’ or dinner. The housewives would spend part of their morning cooking that meal. Supper was a smaller meal that they had at the end of the day. Breakfast tended to be leftovers from the previous day's ‘noonmeat’.

In a pilgrim household, the adults sat down to eat and the children and servants waited on them. The foods that the colonists and Wampanoag Indians ate were very similar, but their eating patterns were different. While the colonists had set eating patterns—breakfast, dinner, and supper—the Wampanoags tended to eat when they were hungry and to have pots cooking throughout the day.


Source: Kathleen Curtin, Food Historian at Plimoth Plantation

16 November 2008

"Bedouin Obama"!!!















'Bedouin' Obama!
Nearly 8,000 Arab Bedouins in northern Israel are claiming kinship with US president-elect Barack Obama. (Reuters)

Islam Online News:


CAIRO — Already having relatives extending from Hawaii to Kenya, nearly 8,000 Arab Bedouins in northern Israel are also claiming kinship with America's new president-elect, Barack Obama.

"We knew about it years ago but we were afraid to talk about it because we didn't want to influence the election," Arab Bedouin elder Abdul Rahman Sheikh Abdullah told The Times on Thursday, November 13.

"We wrote a letter to him explaining the family connection."

Abdullah, from the village of Bir al-Maksour in Galilee region, says his 95-year-old mother first noticed that Obama looked like one of the African migrant workers in the British-mandated Palestine in 1930s.

One of those migrants, who sometimes used to marry local Bedouin girls, was a relative of Obama's Kenyan grandmother, says Abdullah. Abdullah says he has papers and pictures supporting his claim, but would not divulge them until Obama is in the White House. "We want to send a delegation to congratulate him, and we know we'll get an answer soon."

Obama was elected America's first black president last week after crushing his Republican rival John McCain.

Born in Hawaii, the Illinois senator is the son of a Muslim-turned-atheist Kenyan father and a white American mother.

He lived from ages 6 to 10 in Indonesia with his mother and Muslim stepfather. Bedouins are traditionally pastoral semi-nomadic Arab tribes indigenous to the Negev region.

“Relative Obama”

Bedouins have been distributing sweets and dishes of baklava and pastries in celebration of Obama's election win.

"We knew he'd win," Abdullah said, constantly interrupted by a barrage of phone calls from well-wishers. "We have always been a lucky family.

Two baby boys born into Abdullah's large clan have been named Obama. Congratulators have been also flocking to Abdullah's region to pay their respects to the "Bedouin Obama".

"Everyone is talking about [Sheikh Abdullah's ties to Mr Obama] . . . They believe it," said Sheikh Issam al-Khalil from the occupied southern Lebanese town of Ghajar.

"The sheikhs from all the villages are talking about it. There's a whole delegation of Druze leaders coming from the Golan Heights to congratulate him."

Many Bedouins hope that their "relative" Obama will solve their problems. "We hope to God that Obama will solve the problem of Ghajar," said Khalil. Abdullah, the Bedouin elder, is also hopeful.

"We hope he'll end all wars and intervene here to solve our problems in Israel. The Bedouin are the people who suffer the most here."




Hoda Nassef

11 August 2008

More about: Deterioration of the Red Sea




More about: “Deterioration of the Red Sea”

By Hoda Nassef

Wanting to buy a gift for my old school-friend visiting Egypt, I searched the shops downtown, in Garden City, and Zamalek. In each of those three districts, there was at least one shop selling handmade artifacts, which I enjoyed browsing through. But, to my dismay, each shop displayed beautiful appliqués and other crafts, all made of seashells and huge chunks of coral reef as the main centerpiece. How on earth are they still getting the coral reef, when it is, or should be, absolutely forbidden?

We exchanged gifts and then I grumbled about the shops all boldly displaying broken chunks of coral reef. She laughed and said I was becoming more ‘Americanized’ than she was, and admitted that it was a pity that we Egyptians are not really concerned with our own environment. She said that in Sharm El-Sheikh, everywhere you go, they sell handcrafts in the hotels’ boutiques or nearby shops, and even around the hotels’ swimming pools, all made of coral reef. Some ‘objects of art’ were turned into corner-table lamps, or simply used as house decorations, with other sea objects clustered around the coral.

To aggravate me even more, she said that most of the hotels that have been constructed there actually used explosives to make their artificial lakes, lagoons and swimming pools, disregarding the damage to the sea creatures, fish, and coral reef. Ironically, some of the same hotels afterwards were eventually named as “green hotels”, indicating that they were “environmentally friendly”! What a joke!

We are really self-destructive. How can we pretend to be aware of our environment, let alone CARE about it, when we ruin the environment with our own ignorance or greed? The beautiful Red Sea is ‘an endangered species’: it is in mortal danger.

Musing on the word “red” (El Bahr El Ahmar’ translates to The Red Sea, in Arabic) - researchers are still perplexed as to why this sea was named ‘red’. My theory is that the sun reflecting the crimson hues off the aura of the rocky hills surrounding it during sunsets, and mirroring it into the transparent sea, has inspired this name for earlier settlers. Yet again, it may be due to the unique coral reefs.

The Red Sea has been estimated to be between 20 and 40 million years old, as a result of the continental platforms drift that steadily separated Africa and Asia (and is actually still happening) thus creating the African Rift that extends up to the Jordan Valley and the Dead Sea Depression. Egypt has nearly 1,000 km of coast on the Red Sea, together with the whole perimeter of Sinai, surrounded by the Strait of Suez and the Gulf of Aqaba. The Red Sea is 2,350 kilometers long and 350 kilometers wide at its widest point off Ethiopia, covering a total area of 450,000 square kilometers.

Since prehistoric time, the Red Sea has been one of the busiest and most important sea routes of the world. All ancient civilizations of the Region established outpost-trading communities on the shores of the Red Sea. Between these outposts lived scattered traditional societies. These pastoral or fishing groups never reached high population densities and archeological evidence suggests that their way of life survived unchanged for thousand of years.

In “Habitat”, it stated that the Red sea possesses unique characteristics that cannot be found anywhere else on earth. The Strait of Suez and the Gulf of Aqaba close it in to the north, and the Strait of Bab El Mandeb (gate of tears) closes it in to the South at a depth of roughly 100 meters, forming a basin. This separates the Red Sea substantially from the system of currents of the Indian Ocean. Because of this 'semi-continuity' with the ocean, the Red Sea is an ecosystem of the Indo-Pacific variety. It is unique in that the Red Sea is home to around 20 percent of endemic fish species in the world, and for the particularly varied coral reefs (more than four hundred species of coral have so far been recorded). Because its deep waters can reach temperatures of 32 degrees centigrade due to volcanic activity on the seabed, the almost total lack of tides, and its regular currents - driving northwards in winter and southwards in summer - the Red Sea constitutes a fantastic and unrivalled botanical niche.

Furthermore, I read that the Red Sea contains ‘representatives’ of all major tropical marine habitats, and such high diversity of habitats (i.e. their natural environment) in the Egyptian Red Sea coast are occupied by a large and diverse number of marine animals. These animals have adapted to sharing of resources and the perfect use of available spaces. Such harmony may be affected by the human interference during the exploration of the coastal plains, not to mention constructing residential areas right along its borders.

There are several groups of animals that inhabit the Red Sea, other than fish. These include turtles and sea birds. The other marine mammals, which are recorded, include seven species of dolphin, and whales. It is thought that such minor diversity of mammal species is due to the geographical nature of the Red Sea entrances, the salinity, as well as low primary productivity.
Marine turtles form a prominent part of the fauna of the Red Sea. The areas on the shore where the turtles choose as nesting sites are very limited to small number of sites in South Sinai and few spots on the south Red Sea coast. Many of these turtles have reported to lay their eggs on offshore islands. All the marine turtles of the Red Sea are considered threatened and both the green and hawk-bills are declared endangered species.

While reading ‘Global Plan of Action’, it mentioned that the coastline of Egypt is undergoing extensive habitat alteration, due to construction, including ‘dredge and fill’ operations of shallow areas, excavation of artificial lagoons, mining and quarrying. Suspended fine sediments resulting from these activities can inflict widespread damage to coral reefs, seagrass beds, mangroves and other marine life, over distances of dozens of kilometers from the source. Several urban centers have been developed along the coast at Suez, Hurghada and Sharm El Sheikh. As we know, Egypt is the site of the most extensive tourism development on the Red Sea. But, tourism development constitutes a serious threat to both the marine environment and the tourism industry itself, if not planned and developed on a sound environmental basis with the effective enforcement of environmental regulations.

I discovered that on Egypt's Hurghada coast, which is the most affected, sediments from coastal alteration activities have spread to extensive fringing reefs down the coastline and to the adjacent islands and offshore reefs, where they are damaging corals and mangroves.

Another main sources of pollution on Egypt's Red Sea coast is the discharge of poorly treated or untreated sewage matter into the marine environment. Tourism areas located outside city limits have their own sewage treatment facilities, but most tourism areas on the coast of the Red Sea and Gulf of Aqaba meet their fresh water requirements through the desalination of seawater or groundwater.

It has been reported that areas such as Hurghada and Sharm El Sheikh have been developed and exploited beyond their ecological capacities and are already showing signs of environmental degradation. ‘Global Plan of Action’ also states that evidence of reef degradation due to tourism and other activities is clear, even in pristine areas such as the Ras Mohamed National Protected Park, because the coasts have become a repository for large quantities of industrial, commercial and residential trash and other solid waste. Often this takes the form of plastics, metal containers, wood, tires and even entire scrapped automobile parts at some localities!

In some areas containing extensive metal and industrial debris, the potential exists for toxic substances to leach into the marine environment. Wooden pallets and driftwood may form a physical barricade to female turtles crawling up beaches to nest. Damage to coastal and other vegetation from the use of vehicles is also evident in the Red Sea region. This not only reduces vegetation available for birds, grazing mammals and other wildlife, but also causes loss of ‘halophytes’ that can destabilize sand dunes bordering many shore areas.

Together with dredging, coastal reclamation probably represents one of the most negative impacts on the coastal marine environment of the Red Sea. Apart from the direct and permanent loss of habitat, landfill usually increases sedimentation. Inadvertent coral breakage by divers and improper mooring by diving and fishing boats, as well as damage due to sediment stir-up by diving activities, in addition to collecting corals, starfish, urchins, and other sea creatures, may ultimately cause loss of diversity in marine habitats and degradation of coral reefs.

In addition, the Middle East harbors more than half of the world's proven oil reserves, thereby ranking as the world's largest oil production area. The Red Sea, therefore, carries significant oil traffic as well as drilling sites. Oil spills, pollution from machines, oily mud sediment, and drilling into the reefs themselves are some of the unfortunate by-products of the industry.

‘Global Plan of Action’ also remarked that the Red Sea is unique and not found elsewhere in the world. Its enclosed nature, together with limited water exchanges with the Indian Ocean, considerably reduces the potential for dispersion of pollutants. This is especially so in the relatively shallow Gulfs of Suez and Aqaba, as compared to the main body of the Red Sea which is very deep along most of its length.

The predicted increase in number of people either visiting or working along Egypt's Red Sea coastline require more sewage disposal and discharges which deplete the quality of the very amenities which attract tourism in the first place: clean beaches, pleasant weather and the spectacular underwater reefs.

We should protect our God-given blessings, and not let our economical need for growth overlook the vital importance of “growing”, yet under professional supervision and management. I fear that after we have exhausted all possible space and ways of ruining the Red Sea and the Red Sea Coast, we will greedily look forward to ruining the Mediterranean Sea and the spectacular Northern Coast.

H.N.

14 July 2008

Death of a Giant: Dr. Michael DeBakey


The Death of a Giant: Dr. Michael Ellis DeBakey

Born:September 7, 1908 (1908-09-07) Lake Charles, Louisiana, United States
Died: July 11, 2008 (aged 99; almost 100) Houston, Texas, United States
Alma mater: Tulane University
Religious beliefs:Maronite Catholic

Famed Heart Surgeon Michael DeBakey Dead at 99 (Sun. 13 – July 2008)

Michael DeBakey, the man who first performed heart bypass surgery, died Friday night at Methodist Hospital in Houston at the age of 99 from natural causes, the Associated Press reported Saturday.

The renowned cardiovascular surgeon invented many devices to help the ailing human heart; while still in medical school in 1932, he designed the roller pump, which became a key part of the heart-lung machine and opened the door to open-heart surgery. He also was behind the first efforts to develop artificial hearts and heart pumps for those waiting for heart transplants.
In 2006, DeBakey even underwent a procedure that he himself had developed -- the surgical repair of a damaged aorta.

While at the Baylor College of Medicine, officials there said, he helped transform the school into a nationally respected medical institution.

"Dr. DeBakey's reputation brought many people into this institution, and he treated them all: heads of state, entertainers, businessmen and presidents, as well as people with no titles and no means," Ron Girotto, president of the Methodist Hospital System, told the AP.
Cardiovascular surgeon Dr. George Noon called his professional partner "the greatest surgeon of the 20th century," who "single-handedly raised the standard of medical care, teaching and research around the world."

Biography

Early life:

Michael Ellis DeBakey was born as Michel Dabaghi in Lake Charles, Louisiana, to Maronite Lebanese immigrants Shaker and Raheeja Dabaghi (later Anglicized to DeBakey).

Medical career:

DeBakey received his BSc degree from Tulane University in New Orleans. In 1932, he received an M.D. degree from Tulane University School of Medicine. He remained in New Orleans to complete his internship and residency in surgery at Charity Hospital. DeBakey completed his surgical fellowships at the University of Strasbourg, France, under Professor René Leriche, and at the University of Heidelberg, Germany, under Professor Martin Kirschner. Returning to Tulane Medical School, he served on the surgical faculty from 1937 to 1948. From 1942 to 1946, he was on military leave as a member of the Surgical Consultants' Division in the Office of the Surgeon General of the Army, and in 1945 he became its Director and received the Legion of Merit. DeBakey helped develop the mobile army surgical hospital (MASH) units and later helped establish the Veteran's Administration Medical Center Research System. He joined the faculty of Baylor University College of Medicine (now known as the Baylor College of Medicine) in 1948, serving as Chairman of the Department of Surgery until 1993. DeBakey was president of the college from 1969 to 1979, served as Chancellor from 1979 to January 1996, he was then named Chancellor Emeritus. He was also Olga Keith Wiess and Distinguished Service Professor in the Michael E. DeBakey Department of Surgery at Baylor College of Medicine and Director of the DeBakey Heart Center for research and public education at Baylor College of Medicine and the Methodist Hospital.

DeBakey's ability to bring his professional knowledge to bear on public policy earned DeBakey a reputation as a medical statesman. He was a member of the medical advisory committee of the Hoover Commission and was chairman of the President's Commission on Heart Disease, Cancer and Stroke during the Johnson Administration. He has worked tirelessly in numerous capacities to improve national and international standards of health care. Among his numerous consultative appointments was a three-year membership on the National Advisory Heart and Lung Council of the National Institutes of Health.

DeBakey served in the U.S. Army during World War II and helped to revolutionize wartime medicine by supporting the stationing of doctors closer to the front lines. This concept greatly improved the survival rate of wounded soldiers and resulted in the development of Mobile Army Surgical Hospital (MASH) units during the Korean War.

Medical pioneer:

At age 23, while still in medical school at Tulane University, DeBakey invented the roller pump, the significance of which was not realized until 20 years later, when it became an essential component of the heart-lung machine.[10] The pump provided a continuous flow of blood during operations. This, in turn, made open-heart surgery possible.

With his mentor, Alton Ochsner, he postulated in 1939 a strong link between smoking and carcinoma of the lung. DeBakey was one of the first to perform coronary artery bypass surgery, and in 1953 he performed the first successful carotid endarterectomy. A pioneer in the development of an artificial heart, DeBakey was the first to use a external heart pump successfully in a patient — a left ventricular bypass pump.

DeBakey pioneered the use of Dacron grafts to replace or repair blood vessels. In 1958, to counteract narrowing of an artery caused by an endarterectomy, DeBakey performed the first successful patch-graft angioplasty. This procedure involved patching the slit in the artery from an endarterectomy with a Dacron or vein graft. The patch widened the artery so that when it closed, the channel of the artery returned to normal size. The DeBakey artificial graft is now used around the world to replace or repair blood vessels.

In the 1960s, DeBakey and his team of surgeons were among the first to record surgeries on film. A camera operator would lie prone atop a surgical film stand made to Dr. DeBakey's specifications and record a surgeon's eye view of the operating area. The camera and lights were positioned within three to four feet of the operative field, yet did not interfere with the surgical team.

DeBakey worked together with Dr. Denton Cooley, while they both practiced at Baylor College of Medicine. According to the April 18, 1969 issue of Life magazine, they had a disagreement associated with Cooley's apparently unauthorized implantation of the first artificial heart in a human. The disagreement turned into a bitter feud that lasted for decades; the two men reconciled only in 2007, but DeBakey made it public by inviting Cooley to the presentation of the Congressional Gold Medal. Debakey was a perfectionist and intolerant of incompetence, and was known to be brutal to surgical trainees and co-workers and would fire surgical assistants who made minor errors.

To the amazement of his colleagues and patients, DeBakey continued to practice medicine into an age well after most others have retired. DeBakey practiced medicine until the day he died, and nearly reached 100 years of age in 2008. His contributions to the field of medicine spanned the better part of 75 years. Dr. DeBakey operated on more than 50,000 patients, including several heads of state. Dr. DeBakey and a team of American cardiothoracic surgeons, including Dr. George Noon, supervised quintuple bypass surgery performed by Russian surgeons on Russian President Boris Yeltsin in 1996.

During 1969, the Baylor College of Medicine separated from Baylor University under his direction. The DeBakey High School for Health Professions, the Methodist DeBakey Heart & Vascular Center and the Michael E. DeBakey Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Houston in the Texas Medical Center in Houston are named after him. He had a role in establishing the Michael E. DeBakey Heart Institute at the Hays Medical Center in Kansas. Several atraumatic vascular surgical clamps and forceps that he introduced also bear his name.

In 1969, he received the Presidential Medal of Freedom. In 1987, President Ronald Reagan awarded him the National Medal of Science. He was a Health Care Hall of Famer, a Lasker Luminary, and a recipient of The United Nations Lifetime Achievement Award, the Presidential Medal of Freedom with Distinction, and The National Medal of Science. He was given the Lifetime Achievement Award of the Foundation for Biomedical Research and in 2000 was cited as a "Living Legend" by the Library of Congress. On April 23, 2008, he received the Congressional Gold Medal from President George W. Bush, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.

In 1987 and 1990, Debakey was investigated by the Texas Medical Board for having more than three malpractice lawsuits in a five year period. Both investigations were dismissed. However, in 1994, his Texas medical license was delinquent for nonpayment.

Health issues:

On December 31, 2005, at age 97, DeBakey suffered an aortic dissection. Years prior, DeBakey had pioneered the surgical treatment of this condition, creating what is now known as the DeBakey Procedure. He was hospitalized at The Methodist Hospital in Houston, Texas.
Dr. DeBakey initially resisted the surgical option, but as his health deteriorated and DeBakey became unresponsive, the surgical team opted to proceed with surgical intervention. In a controversial decision, Houston Methodist Hospital
Ethics Committee approved the operation; on February 9–10, he became the oldest patient ever to undergo the surgery for which he was responsible. The operation lasted seven hours. After a complicated post-operative course that required eight months in the hospital, at a cost of over one million dollars, Dr. DeBakey was released in September 2006 and returned to good health. Although DeBakey had previously refused surgery, he later stated that he was grateful that his surgical team performed the operation.

He was present at Baylor College of Medicine for the groundbreaking of the new Michael E. DeBakey Library and Museum on October 18, 2006.

OBITUARY:


On July 11, 2008, DeBakey died of natural causes at The Methodist Hospital in Houston.

DeBakey was preceded in death by his first wife, Diana Cooper DeBakey who died of a heart attack in 1972 and by his sons, Houston lawyer Ernest O. DeBakey, who died in 2004, and Barry E. DeBakey, who died in 2007. His brother Dr. Ernest G. DeBakey died in 2006. Ernest DeBakey was a cancer specialist in Mobile, Alabama. In addition to his wife, Katrin, and their daughter, Olga, DeBakey is survived by sons Michael and Denis, as well as sisters Lois and Selma DeBakey, who are both medical editors and linguists at Baylor.

Honors

Lifetime Achievement Awards from the Academy of Medical Films
American Heart Association (AHA)
Children Uniting Nations
Encyclopaedia Britannica
Foundation for Biomedical Research
International College of Angiology
International Health and Medical Film Festival
Research! America
Tulane Medical Alumni Association
U.S. Army Legion of Merit (1945)
American Medical Association Hektoen Gold Medal (1954 and 1970)
Rudolph Matas Award in Vascular Surgery (1954)
International Society of Surgery Distinguished Service Award (1958)
Leriche Award (1959)
American Medical Association Distinguished Service Award (1959)
Albert Lasker Award for Clinical Medical Research (1963)
American Medical Association Billings Gold Medal Exhibit Award (1967)
American Heart Association Gold Heart Award (1968)
Union of Soviet Socialist Republics Academy of Sciences 50th Anniversary Jubilee Medal (1973)
Russian Academy of Medical Sciences Foreign Member (1974)
Veterans of Foreign Wars Commander-in-Chief’s Medal and Citation (1980)
American Surgical Association Distinguished Service Award (1981)
Academy of Surgical Research Markowitz Award (1988)
Association of American Medical Colleges Special Recognition Award (1988)
American Legion Distinguished Service Award (1990)
Premio Giuseppe Corradi Award for Surgery and Scientific Research (1997)
Russian Military Medical Academy, Boris Petrovsky International Surgeons Award and First Laureate of the Boris Petrovsky Gold Medal (1997)
John P. McGovern Compleat Physician Award (1999)
Russian Academy of Sciences Foreign Member (1999)
Texas Senate and House of Representatives, Adoption of resolutions honoring Dr. DeBakey for 50 years of medical practice in Texas (1999)
American Medical Association Virtual Mentor Award (2000)
American Philosophical Society Jonathan Rhoads Medal (2000)
Library of Congress Bicentennial Living Legend Award (2000)
Villanova University Mendel Medal Award (2001)
Houston Hall of Fame (2001)
NASA Invention of the Year Award (2001)
MUSC "Lindbergh-Carrel Prize"(2002)
Congressional Gold Medal (April 23, 2008)

Publications

As a lifelong scholar, Dr. DeBakey's writings are reflected in more than 1,300 published medical articles, chapters and books on various aspects of surgery, medicine, health, medical research and medical education, as well as ethical, socio-economics and philosophic discussion in these fields. Many of these are now considered classics. In addition to his scholarly writings, he is a best selling author, having co-authored such popular works as The Living Heart, The Living Heart Shopper's Guide and The Living Heart Guide to Eating Out.

Michael E. DeBakey, M.D.

Pioneer, innovator, miracle maker, Samaritan

Michael Ellis DeBakey is an internationally recognized and respected physician and surgeon, noted for his pioneering work in the field of cardiovascular surgery, as well as for his innovative research into this and other fields of medicine. He is credited with inventing and perfecting scores of medical devices, techniques and procedures which have led to healthy hearts and productive lives for millions throughout the world. Dacron arteries, arterial bypass operations, artificial hearts, heart pumps and heart transplants are common procedures in today's medicine, thanks to Dr. DeBakey.

Additionally, Michael DeBakey is credited with developing the Mobile Army Surgical Hospitals (M.A.S.H.) concepts for the military, which has led to saving thousands during the Korean and Vietnam conflicts. As well, the development of specialized medical and surgical center systems, in order to treat returning military personnel, subsequently became the Veterans Administration Medical Center System, saving many more lives.

Dr. DeBakey has earned an enviable reputation as a medical statesman. He has served as advisor to almost every President in the past fifty years, as well as to heads of state throughout the world. He led the movement to establish the National Library of Medicine, which is now the world's largest and most prestigious repository of medical archives. Dr. DeBakey continues to devote considerable time to national advisory committees and to consultantships in Europe and the Middle and Far East, where he has helped to establish health care systems.

As a lifelong scholar, Dr. DeBakey's writings are reflected in more than 1,300 published medical articles, chapters and books on various aspects of surgery, medicine, health, medical research and medical education, as well as ethical, socio-economics and philosophic discussion in these fields. many of these are now considered classics. In addition to his scholarly writings, he is a best selling author, having co-authored such popular works as, The Living Heart, The Living Heart Shopper's Guide and The Living Heart Guide to Eating Out.

This prolific humanitarian has performed more than 60,000 cardiovascular procedures and has trained thousands of surgeons who practice through the world. He has operated on heads of state, princes and celebrities, as well as paupers, with the same exacting surgical technique and compassion to all. In 1976, his students from throughout the world founded the Michael E. DeBakey International Surgical Society. In appreciation of his untiring pedagogic and investigative efforts, the Trustees of Baylor University, where Dr. DeBakey is Chancellor of Baylor College of Medicine, established the Michael E. DeBakey Center for Biomedical Education, as well as the Debakey Lectureship.

Dr. DeBakey has received numerous honorary degrees from prestigious colleges and universities as well as innumerable awards from educational institutions, professional and civic organizations, and governments worldwide. In 1969, he received the highest honor a United Sates citizen can received, the Presidential Medal of Freedom with Distinction. In 1987, President Ronald Reagan awarded him the National Medal of Science.

With his keen intellect, professional ingenuity, personal integrity and selfless devotion to humanity, Women's International Center is so proud to present the International Samaritan Living Legacy Award to a living legend and a genuine healer of the human heart.

Michael DeBakey
AKA Michael Ellis DeBakey

Bio-Data:

Born: 7-Sep-1908
Birthplace: Lake Charles, LA
Died: 11-Jul-2008
Location of death: Houston, TX
Cause of death: Natural Causes
Gender: Male
Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
Occupation: Doctor, Inventor
Party Affiliation: Republican
Nationality: United States (Lebanese Origin)
Executive summary: Pioneering heart surgeon
Military service: US Army
Father: Shaker Morris DeBakey (el-Dabaghy)
Mother: Raheehja Zorba DeBakey
Brother: Ernest G. DeBakey
Sister: Lois DeBakey
Sister: Selma DeBakey
Wife: Selwa DeBakey
Diana Cooper (m. 15-Oct-1936, d., four sons)

Education:

Member:


Awards:



His nephew, who was a dear friend of mine and has his namesake, died at 36 from an air bomb in Hasmeieh, Lebanon, in 1983. I commemorate them both.

h.n.

19 June 2008

Alexandria











Building Alexandria


By Hoda Nassef


The second largest city in Egypt, Alexandria, known as "The Pearl of the Mediterranean", has an atmosphere that is more Mediterranean than Middle Eastern; its ambience and cultural heritage distance it from the rest of the country although it is actually only 225 km. from Cairo.

Founded by Alexander the Great in 331 BC, Alexandria became the capital of Greco-Roman Egypt, its status as a beacon of culture symbolized by Pharaohs, the legendary lighthouse that was one of the Seven Wonders of the World. The setting for the stormy relationship between Cleopatra and Mark Antony, Alexandria was also the centre of learning in the ancient world. But ancient Alexandria declined, and when Napoleon landed, he found a sparsely populated fishing village.

From the 19th century Alexandria took a new role, as a focus for Egypt's commercial and maritime expansion. This Alexandria has been immortalized by writers such as E. M. Forster and Kefafy. Generations of immigrants from Greece, Italy and the Levant settled here and made the city synonymous with commerce, cosmopolitanism and bohemian culture.
Alexandria is a city to explore at random. It's as important to enjoy the atmosphere as it is to see the sights.

Old Alexandria

Dino-crates built the Hepatisation, the causeway between Pharos and the mainland. This divided the harbours into the Western and Eastern. The Eastern harbour was really where the old harbour from the Middle Ages was located.

Of modern Alexandria, the oldest section is along the causeway which links what was once Pharos island with the mainland and includes the districts of Gumrok (‘customs’; the oldest dating to about the 16th century and known as the customs district) Anfushi, and Ras-el-Tin The latter two districts date to about the period of Mohammed Ali (1805-49). Collectively, these districts are known to westerners as the Turkish Quarter. They have had a number of ups and downs over the years, particularly due to the plague during the 17th century. The area forms somewhat of a T-shape, dividing the Eastern Harbour from the Western Harbour.

This section of Alexandria is known to us more from books then what we may actually see in the area. Where the Pharos Lighthouse once stood, is now occupied by the Fort of Quit Bay, out on the area that circles up around the top of Eastern Harbour forming the eastern section of the top of the T. Heading south from the Fort of Quit Bay, we come to the stunning Abu El-Abbas Mosque. West of this is the Anfushi Tombs, some of the oldest in Alexandria and well worth a visit.

Central Alexandria

The Underwater Discoveries

Relatively new discoveries in the Eastern Harbour involve two different sites. Around Fort Quit Bay the site has unearthed hundreds of objects, including what experts believe are the remains of the Pharos Lighthouse, one of the ancient wonders of the world.

In the southeast part of the harbour archaeologists have apparently found the Royal Quarters, including granite columns and fabulous statues, including one of Isis and a sphinx with a head thought to be that of Cleopatra's father. There may vary well be an underwater exhibit in the future!
Heading towards the mainland past the Abu El-Abbes Mosque and connecting with Sharia Faransa Street leads to the Suq district. Just before entering the district one finds the interesting little Tirana Mosque In the Suq district, one finds Alexandria's only surviving ‘wakalas’, which is a part of the El-Chorbagui Mosque complex founded in 1757. This was also the area where Alexandria's Jewish community lived, but most have now migrated to Israel. Different areas have specialized in different goods and one may find all manner of products from jewellery to Medicinal plants (Suq El-Magharba) to Bedouin clothing (Suq El-Libya).

Continuing down Faransa one passes Midan Tahrir and the street turns into Salah Salem, and finally connects with Al-Horreya. However, Midan Tahrir, popularly called Manshiya, has considerable history. The areas were once home to Diplomats and known as Place Des Consuls, but after the statue of Mohammed Ali was placed here in 1873 the name was changed to Midan Mohammed Ali. In 1882, it was bombarded by the British and all but destroyed. The Alexandria Stock Exchange was once located here, and it was from the midan (square) that Nasser announced the nationalization of the Suez Canal.

The street named Al-Horreya ('tariq' - route - Abdel-Nasser) which transverses the area from east to west was in ancient times the Canopic Way with the Gate of the Sun at the eastern end and the Gate of the Moon at the western end. At that time, there were probably columns lining the road. The main north to South Street, now Sharia (street) El-Nebi (prophet) Daniel, ran from the East Harbour all the way to Lake Harbour on Lake Mariott.

Just south of the intersection of Al-Horreya and el-Nebi Daniel was the site traditionally thought to be the burial place of Alexander the Great, but that has not been located, and may in fact be beneath the Mosque of Nebi Daniel, or in a nearby Greek Necropolis. The famous Alexandria Library was probably nearby. However, the only real antiquities site that can be viewed in the area is Kom el-Dikka; a small Roman theatre that has been excavated. Nearby is also a bath house of the era. To the east is the Antiques District where dealers sell antiquities, books, old weapons and furniture. Here is also the Attarine Mosque, which was once a church dedicated to Euthanasia.

Further south along the tramway is Pompey's pillar and nearby the Catacombs of Kom ash-Shuqqafa.

Wandering along el-Nebo Daniel are several other attractions, including the French Cultural Centre, and nearby the Eliahud Hanabi Synagague, which is the only active synagogue in Alexandria and houses the combined treasures of the seven former Alexandrian synagogues.
Back to the north on el-Nebi Daniel, next to the harbour where Ramla station is now located at Midan Saad Zaghloul was the location of the Cesareum. This was a magnificent temple begun by Cleopatra for her lover Antony and subsequently completed by their enemy Octavian, though none of this remains in situ. Nearby is the well known Cecil Hotel, built in 1930, Sommerset Maugham stayed here, as did Winston Churchill, and the British Secret Service one maintained a suite for their operations.

Midan Saad Zaghloul is the entertainment heart and nerve centre of Alexandria. Here, as terminals and train stations provide a backdrop for cinemas, restaurants and night spots. It was the setting of Lawrence Darrell’s Alexandria Quartet and the famous Alexandria coffee houses. The square is dominated by an impressive monument dedicated to Saad Zaghloul, a former national leader.

The Greek Quarter and Rosetta District

Back on Al-Horreya heading east, as we pass the Greco-Roman Museum (a notable museum well worth a visit) we move into the Greek Quarter of Alexandria, one of the most beautiful residential districts. The wonderful old villas include the massive Miclavez building, which is opposite the Town Hall and nearby the Adda Complex built in 1929. This is where the wealthy Greeks lived at the turn of the century, and the streets are still named after the Ptolemaic, Pharaonic, Abbasid and Fatimid rulers. Further east is the Greek Orthodox patriarchate and the Church of St. Saba.

Further east, Al-Horreya opens into a beautiful green area known as the Shallalat (waterfalls) Gardens, which was once the fortification of Bab Rosetta. But in 1905, Alexandria created a garden area here with waterfalls and the only Alexandria cistern which can be viewed. This cistern is an example of those which once dotted Alexandria providing fresh water to her inhabitants.

The Corniche

The Corniche is doted with Casinos built on stilts and rows of beach huts. The avenue here did not always exist, for until the 20th century, the areas remained fortified by a five mile long wall with towers which had protected the city since the 13th Century. In the early 1900s, a strip of land with a width of about 100 years was reclaimed from the sea, and the area became popular with beach goers. That is no longer the case, but it remains a lively area of Alexandria.

On the western end of the Corniche near Silsila (Chain) where the New Alexandria Library is being constructed is the Shatby Tombs which are said to be the oldest in Alexandria. Nearer the San Stefano area across the tram tracks is also the Royal Jewellery Museum.

El-Mahmoudia Canal

A walk along the Mahmudiya Canal brings one face to face with the working class and industrial districts of Alexandria, and is pleasant along the old paved road bordered by the canal and sycamore trees. South of the Greek district along the canal is the Antoniadis Gardens, which seep with history. Here, the poet Callimatius lived and taught, and in 640 AD, Pompilius prevented the King of Syria from capturing Alexandria. But less then a year later, Amr Ibn el-Aas camped here, before taking the city. The well known Water Traffic Circle is also in the area.
Here one finds the Zoological Gardens, the small Museum of Natural History and the Fine Arts Museum in the Moharrem Bey area, and a Rose Garden. The beautiful public gardens extend into the surrounding area where the Antoniadis Palace is located, and there is even a nearby Roman tomb.

El-Montazah & Montazah Gardens

This area along the coast about 15 miles east of Alexandria's old district along the Corniche is where many of the modern Alexandrian hotels are located, as well as one of the elegant heritage hotels. Khedive Abbas II built the Salamlik as a residence. Here also is the magnificent Montazah Palace.

NOSTALGIE DU PASSE
Nostalgia of the Past

Il y avait une fois un pays bien-aimé,
There was once a city well-loved;
Au ciel bleu d’azur et au sable doré.
With an azure bleu sky and golden sand.
Nous marchions les pieds nus tout le long du rivage,
We walked bare-footed throughout the long beach,
Le soleil sur la peau et le vent au visage.
The sun on our skins and the wind on our faces.
Nous plongions notre corps dans la mer cristalline,
We plunged our bodies into the crystalline sea,
Et le soir nous dansions au son des mandolines...
And at night we danced at the sound of mandolins…
Ce fut un temps jadis, quand nous avions vingt ans,
It was a jaded time, when we were twenty,
Nous étions jeunes et beaux comme un jour de printemps...
We were young and beautiful like a spring day…
Terre de notre enfance, terre où nous sommes nés,
Soil of our childhood, soil of our birth,
D’où un cruel destin nous a déracinés,
From where we were snatched by a cruel destiny,
Nous étions tous unis, on nous a divisés,
Where once we were united, they have separated us,
Et par le monde entier nous sommes parsemés.
And throughout the whole world we were dispersed.
Les jours se sont enfuis et nous cherchons en vain
The days are far apart and we search in vain
Ces moments si précieux d’un passé si lointain...
For those precious moments of a past so far away…
Malgré l’envol du temps et les ans écoulés
Despite the flying of time and trickling away of years
Alexandrie toujours, sera dans nos pensées!
Alexandria will be forever in our thoughts!

Poème: Viviane Borg-Fleri
Poem by Viviane Borg-Fleri

Translation by Hoda Nassef


SOME LISTINGS:-

Cinemas

*Amir Fouad St, Mihatit Al-Raml, Tel (03) 391 7972; 392 7693
*Cairo Seas Tel (03) 543 3350
*Carrefour Beginning of Alexandria-Cairo Desert Road, Tel (03) 397 01565
*Cineplex Green Plaza, Smouha, Tel (03) 532 5745/6
*Al-Deeb Mall Horriya Road, Rushdi, Tel (03) 541 1597/8
*Family San Stefano Opposite Gianaclis tram station, Tel (03) 585 5088
*Ferial Saad Zagloul St, Mihatit Al-Raml, Tel (03) 486 9364
*Metro Safiya Zaghlul St, Mihatit Al-Raml, (03) 487 0432
*Rio 37 Horriya Road, Mihatit Al-Raml, Tel (03) 392 9036
*Royal Next to Sayed Darwish Theatre, Fouad St, Tel (03) 485 5725/7
*San Stefano Tel (03) 469 0056
*Smouha Off Dawaran Zahran, Smouha, Tel (03) 424 5898/9
*Zahran Zahran Mall, Off Dawaran Zahran, Smouha, Tel (03) 424 0844/66

Clubs in Alexandria

* Alexandria British Community Group (ABCG)
• American Women of Alexandria
• Archaeological Society of Alexandria
• Centro de Portugal
• Delta Hash House Harriers
• Friends of the Environment
• German Women of Alexandria
• International Ladies' Club of Alexandria (ILCA)
• Les Amis de la Musique et des Arts
• Old Victorians
• Rotary Club
• Tourist Friends Association
• Women's International Arts and Craft Group of Alexandria

The Alexandria Sporting Club

Built in 1898 and used during the British occupation, the Alexandria Sporting Club is one of the oldest sporting clubs in Egypt. In 1952, it was taken over by the state, converted into a national club (like the El-Gezira Club in Zamalek) and was managed by the Chairman of the Club, Mahmoud Hamdy. Today, the golf course stands on 97 feddans, 97 percent of which constitutes the total club area. It is a flat course with tricky bunkers and can be played by beginners as well as experts. The club also features four restaurants, the Club House Restaurant being the most luxurious, and the Happy Land restaurant serving the children's playground. It also offers party catering.

Members pay 5 LE for 18 holes, while temporary members pay 10 LE to play. Visitors must be accompanied by a member and pay 50 LE.

About the course: 18 holes, Par 70, 5,960 yards, rating 69, two tees

Who Can Play: Annual memberships, daily golf, tourist groups welcome
Golf Services: Pro Shop, caddies, trolleys, club rental
Learning to Play: Golf pro, lessons
About the Clubhouse: Restaurant
Other Facilities: The course is part of the Alexandria Sporting Club, which has two swimming pools, horseracing, croquet, tennis, squash, basketball, football, board games, and many other facilities.

The Alexandria Sporting Club - Telephone +203 543-3627/8/9
Exhibitions & Other Venues:

ALEXANDRIA EXHIBITIONS, PERFORMING VENUES & BIBLIOTHECA:

*Alexandria Creativity Centre 1 Al-Horriya St, Tel (03) 495 6633/9155
*Alexandria Fine Arts Museum 1 Menacha St, Moharam Bey, Tel (03) 393 6616
*Alexandria Atelier 6 Victor Basil St, Azarita, Tel (03)486 0526
*Bibliotheca Alexandrina Galleries Al-Corniche and Port-Said St, Al-Shatbi, Tel (03) 483 999. Daily 11am-9pm. For information visit
*Mahmoud Said Museum 6 Mohamed Pasha Said, Gianaklese, Tel (03) 582 1688. Daily 10am-6pm, closed Mondays
*Smouha Club Somouha, opposite Green Plaza, beginning of Agricultural Road to Cairo, Tel (02) 303 3535, 010 664 0632

Listing for some 4 & 5-Star Hotels, Alexandria:

• Agami Palace Hotel
• Aida Beach Hotel
• Ailema Hotel
• Alexandria Hotel
• Crillon Hotel
• Delta Hotel
• El-Salamlek Palace Hotel
• Helnan Palestine Hotel
• Hilton Borg El-Arab Resort
• Mercure Alexandria Romance
• Paradise Inn Beach Resort
• Paradise Inn Metropole Hotel
• Paradise Inn Windsor Palace Hotel
• Plaza Hotel
• Renaissance Alexandria
• San Giovanni Hotel
(*) San Stefano Plaza
• Sheraton Montazah Hotel
• Sofitel Cecil Alexandria
• Union Hotel

Listing for some 3-Star Hotels, Alexandria:

• Amoun Hotel
• Beauville Hotel
• Cleapatra Hotel
• Corail Hotel
• Costa Bianca Hotel
• Darwish Hotel
• El Haram Hotel
• El Madina El Monawara Hotel
• Holiday Hotel
• Hyde Park House
• Jeddah Hotel
• Kaoud Sporting Hotel
• King Mariout Motel
• Landmark Hotel
• Le Roy Hotel
• Lolowa Hotel
• Marhaba Hotel
• Mecca Hotel
• Misr Hotel
• Nobel Hotel
• Petit Coin Hotel
• Piccadilly Hotel
• Ramsis Hotel
• Regency Hotel
• Sea Star Hotel
• Semiramis Hotel
• Summer Moon Hotel
(*) San Stefano Plaza
• Sheraton Montazah Hotel

(*) San Stefano Plaza “Jotun Egypt has secured the third "Four Season Hotel" – San Stefano in Alexandria”…

Jotun has already painted Four season Hotel in Sharm El Sheikh & Four Season Hotel – Nile Plaza. “San Stefano.” Grand Plaza This awe-inspiring project includes every conceivable modern privilege: from a five star Four Seasons Hotel and shopping mall, luxury residential units and commercial facilities. San Stefano set on 31000 sq. meters of prime real estate land and overlooking the Mediterranean Sea with a 170-meter frontage alongside the beach.

On 15 Jan 2004, Jotun Egypt signed the contract of San Stefano Four Season Hotel. Depa Egypt branch of Depa Holding Co. won the Four Season contract and Jotun paints was the partner in this prestigious project, based on the pervious successful projects (Sheraton Montazah, Hilton Luxor, Holiday Inn at Sharm El-Sheikh, JW Marriott mirage city Cairo Golden Pyramids Entertainment City in Cairo).

“Our business philosophy is based on providing our clients with the highest standards of workmanship, using quality materials, with tight schedules and targeted budget management” Says the GM of Depa Egypt. Three decades of prestigious hotel interior contracts for renowned hotel groups worldwide has made DEPA a leading international company.

Jotun has already painted Four season Hotel in Sharm El Sheikh & Four Season Hotel – Nile Plaza. “San Stefano.” Grand Plaza This awe-inspiring project includes every conceivable modern privilege: from a five star Four Seasons Hotel and shopping mall, luxury residential units and commercial facilities. San Stefano set on 31000 sq. meters of prime real estate land and overlooking the Mediterranean Sea with a 170-meter frontage alongside the beach. The residential part consists of 900 apartments varying in design and size. The residences range from 131 m2 to 1271 m2.

As for the shopping mall – it consists of four-levels, which occupy the basement upper story and the first three floors of the tower. Stores display a selection of the finest brand names in the world. There are ten different movie theatres.

The hotel consists of 127 rooms and suites overlooking the Mediterranean and 120 residential suites. The hotel guests are welcome to enjoy a private beach, cabins there and the yacht marina and beach restaurant.

Jotun Egypt is looking forward to accomplish this splendid achievement, wining the supply contract for the residential & the shopping mall. Securing prestigious project such as San Stefano Grand Plaza which will exceed by all means our customer satisfaction …. The ultimate goal of Jotun Egypt

The owner: San Stefano Grand Plaza
The construction manager: Laing Int.
The engineer representative: Dar el-Handasah

Listing for Alexandria Cultural Centres:

• American Cultural Center (Amideast)
• British Council: 11 Mahmoud Abul-Ela St, Kafr Abdou, Roushdi, Tel (03) 545 6512
• Conservatoire de Musique d'Alexandrie
• Egyptian Cultural Centers Anfoushi Cultural Center
• French Cultural Center: 30 Nabi Daniel St, Tel (03) 391 8952/392 0804. Closed Friday and Saturday
• Goethe Institute: 10 Batalsa St, Azarita, Tel (03) 487 9870/484 1037
• Horreya Cultural Palace
• Italian Cultural Institute: Italian Consulate, Saad Zaghloul Square, Tel (03) 487 4924
• L'Atelier
• Museum of Fine Arts
• Pharoah's Hall
• Russian Cultural Center
• Sayed Darwish Theater
• Shatby Cultural Center for Artistic and Literary Appreciation
• Spanish Cultural Center (Cervantes Institute): 101 Horreya St, Tel (03) 392 0214/495 2094, open 5-8pm
• The Foundation of Hellenic Culture (Greek)

Listing for some Restaurants, Alexandria:

• Al-Farida Restaurant (Italian and International)
• Al-Farouk Restaurant (French)
• Dynasty Restaurant (Chinese) (at the Renaissance Hotel)
• Price Cafe (snacks and deserts)
• San Giovanni Coffee Shop (La Sirene) Eastern and Western
• San Giovanni Restaurant (Eastern and Western )
• Shells Restaurant (Seafood & Italian)at the Hilton Borg El Arab Resort

Tourism Offices in Alex., Egypt:
Ramleh Station; Saad Zaghloul St. 03 807985
Nozha; Nozha Airport 03 4202021
Marine Passenger; Station Alex. Port 03 803494
Misr Station - - - 03 4925985

H.N.

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