We have much less pollution out here than in the city and more room, at least technically. But most of the land in the countryside is spoken for and used for farming or housing for the most part. The true stuff of life for male Egyptians under the age of about 50 is football (aka, soccer for North Americans) and it is played in any place that it can be played. In the villages along the desert there are football pitches lined up along the edge of the desert that are filled every Friday afternoon. Near my farm, an enterprising individual leveled some land, fenced it and laid out a football pitch that can be rented by the hour. If everyone playing chips in a couple of LE, the cost of a game is minimal for each. There are even lights for a night game. This is going to be a busy place.
I bought a case of white vinegar a few days ago to use in cleaning my lawn sprinklers. We have a lot of calcium in our water and it gums up the valves and outlets. But I love the carton. The brand name is Ganna (heaven, I believe) and it is almost 5% degree vinegar, whatever that is. But even more important it must be new, as it warns us to "Beware tradition"...... or maybe that just means it won't clean my sprinklers?
A mother crow was feeding her baby on top of the hay pile. Mom had to go find more food and the baby decided to ask a passerby for a meal. She's lucky that she found Buffy who is a sucker for any kind of baby.
My housekeeper's son is figuring out walking but he wants to move faster than he can reasonably do so on his own. One of the villagers took some old nails and scrap wood and made this tricycle walker for him that he pushes around the garden. He still falls over but it's sort of slow motion.
My housekeeper's son was playing in the garden this afternoon and I noticed that four of the dogs had lined up next to each other and were watching him carefully. I couldn't resist the photo, but my moving over to take it did distract his oldest watcher at the left end.
One of the things about the crowded Nile Valley is that there are so few places for leisure activities. Of course, leisure for the boys and men is football (soccer to North Americans) and for this you need a football field. These players are from the village of Abu Sir which is to the left of the photograph. Every Friday they gather on the edge of the desert and have a complete football league that plays in impromptu pitches. In our little village, a clever land owner has built a football pitch complete with light poles on a piece of empty land. He will rent it out to people wanting to play by the hour, about LE 50 per hour which works out to be only about LE 2.5 per player for people wanting to play a game.
I came to Egypt as the wife of an Egyptian/Canadian businessman and the mother of our children in the late 80's. My husband is no longer with us, the children are pursuing careers abroad, but Egypt is still my home, albeit, a rural rather than urban one. You can reach me at msgabbani at gmail.com