I was born in Cairo.
Metaphorically, that is. A good way to put it would be to say I was re-born in Egypt, for she is the mother of my life long obsession with travel, discovery and adventure. I was re-born, or shall I say saved, at the tender age of 15, while on a high school trip through Cairo, Luxor, Aswan, Alexandria and their thousands of years of human history. For a young Canadian girl who had been nowhere, it was awe-inspiring, fascinating, fabulous, fantastic, terrifying, exciting and overwhelming all at once. At that age, I only had an inkling of how diverse the world was – that there were different foods, that people lived in different kinds of houses, that people spoke different languages and held different belief systems, or any system at all (I was raised by hippies!). The smells, sounds, flavours, and textures I discovered were a startling revelation that the world was a much bigger, infinitely more fascinating place than I knew it to be. I remember being greeted at the airport when I came home. I saw my Mom and instantly burst into tears. Looking back, I think those were pretty complicated tears. Tears of joy to be home and in familiar territory, tears of sadness for the new friends I had left behind, and tears of mourning. Mourning, because I knew that lost forever was the girl I knew to be ‘me’. Little did I know then, that I had been re-born. Egypt was my saviour; she saved me from a life of sheltered, small-town insularity by bringing me into a whole new world. A world that I’ve come to understand is beautiful and enlightened, yet cruel and ugly, all at the same time.
I’m 34 now, and I’m truly privileged to have traveled through more than 50 countries across five continents, and to have lived for extensive periods of time in six of those countries. Last summer, I made my 8th trip to Egypt and I saw not just how much Cairo, as a living, breathing city, has evolved over the years, but how much I have evolved, too. In memory of that small-town, 15 year old Canadian girl I once was, I’ve chosen to call this blog Bringing Home the World. Because, of every culture I’ve experienced, every person I’ve met on the way, every challenge I’ve faced on the journey, I have taken a little piece and brought it home into my own soul, transforming who I am and who I want to become.
Bringing Home the World is a random collection of my thoughts and experiences, fantasies and foibles, joys and rage while trying to figure this crazy world out. I hope you will join me on my journey, laughing out loud at my loopy adventures or crying inside at my tales of truth.
Sit back, enjoy the ride, but hang on tight…it’s bound to get bumpy.