Today after school a couple of the librarians from the Cairo American College took us out on a falluca ride. A fallucca is a sturdy sailboat that plies the Nile. We drifted up the river with the tide and then sailed back as the sun set behind the pyramids. It was a perfect way to end another busy and productive day at the school. The staff here is making sure we are getting a rich Egyptian experience.
Part of that authentic Egyptian culture included mooring the boat to a dock a block or so from a TGIF restaurant where we all had hamburgers. The menu was pretty standard fare - but I would hazard to guess that not many of the franchise restaurants stateside have hookahs next to the tables.
Afterwards, near our apartment, we stopped with one of our host librarians at a local grocery where we bought some staples for the apartment, eggs, milk, bread that kind of stuff. We also bought a couple pomegranates at a quarter of what the price would have been back home. The librarian explained to the owner of the market that we were visiting poets and I ended up giving him one of my books. He in turn gave me a story.
He said that it is written that within the pomegranate only one of the juicy and tart seeds is blessed by god so that when one is peeling the fruit - it behooves one to be very careful not to lose a single seed because it is impossible to tell by looking which is the blessed seed.
There are a thousand lessons one can take from this parable - but I know I will never peel another pomegranate without remembering Cairo.