Back from Cairo yesterday late. It’s a journey that Abdullah, Saleh, and me started on Tuesday 15 and lasted for four days in Cairo. Propose of the journey was to explore Egyptian universities for PhD degree in Library and Information Science. And that we did.
First day we arrived there was not much time to do anything except visit the holy shrine of Imam Hussain, Sayda Zainab, Khan al Khaleli Bazar, and finally have a nice dinner on the bank of the great Nile. This was great nice cool day we spent with a good first impression about Cairo.
This is the chair that we all saw Shaiykh AL Shaarawi used to sit on every Friday and give his great lectures in Imam Al Hussain mosque. As you can see now someone else is sitting on it.
Second day we go to business. First we made a quick visit to Kuwait Cultural Office which was really close to the hotel. There we tried to get some information that could help or guide us in or mission, but unfortunately no one there was up to it. Second heading was Cairo University. It was nothing as we expected. Huge Campos with many students sittings, talking, walking, studying, and doing almost everything. The Campos looked cool. It was a period of final exams and you can see chairs and tables all over the corridors. We had a meeting there with Professor Aosama AlSayed the chairman of Library, Documentation, and information department in the university. This guy was great and very helpful and encouraging. That’s when our hopes got high.
Same day we made it to Cairo museum and other places like Omar Makram Mosque in Maydan Tahreer Square. Remember الارهاب والكباب, it was filmed there in Tahreer complex. Finally we had this weird journey to see القناطر الخيرية and what a journey it was, just weird!
Third day, we tried to locate conceal of Arabic universities accreditation but we were not successful as the main office was relocated somewhere near Cairo University. So the other option was to visit Ain Shams University. Now the story here is much different. The Campos looked good enough but the inside was like entering an old Arabic movie. I think the next picture will give a good clue. The meeting with Dr.Thanaa the chairman of the department was fast and inconclusive.
Later that night we made a visit to Sayda Nafeesa. She is the descendant of Imama Hassan. The cool thing is that Thursday night newly married couples will gather there to celebrate their weddings and regular people will just crowd and gather outside the mosque forming a nice friendly atmosphere.
That night we had a meeting with Mr.Abu Haneen. He will be our liaison there to finish our papers. This meeting was very informative as more details and information was revealed.
Fourth day, the final day Abdullah insisted to visit Al Rifae Mosque to attend Friday prayer and also to listen to one of the most Quran reciter, and it was done, Saleh dream was to see the Pyramids in real. So we did and we take some great photos there. My request all along was to eat Hamam حمام. The guys were kind enough also to fulfill my request and we did eat Hamam.
Final conclusion, as a country and a place to live and study, it’s not going to be easy. Cairo is hard city. As universities it seems that Cairo University is a good choice. The problem now is finding out if we had to really live there in Cairo for 240 days or not. If just can do it without really living in Cairo, that would really be cool. Also there is much of paper work that needs to be don and it will take us maybe 3 months prepare all the required documents.
Now regarding the guys, Saleh and Abdulaa. What can I say? They are just great with mush cooperation and help. We all were into it and had the enthusiasm. We had so much laughter about the strange things we saw there. Abdullah was the tour guide and Saleh was the budget handler. And i was the negotiator. Thank you guys for great company.
Final notice, I really wish Talal was with us there and we remembered him allot in there. Although I highly doubt it Talal will like the situation in Cairo.
P.S: There is much information to mention and reveal in one post. If you want to know anything more make a comment and ask about Egypt and the universities and bylaws. We will be glad to answer.