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Worldly Thoughts This journal is a hodgepodge of assorted experiences I have had whilst traveling here and there.


EGYPT | Thursday, 17 May 2012 | Views [649]



I hailed a taxi in a part of Cairo called Mohandessin. It isn’t far from Zamalek, where I was headed. A few minutes after getting into the vehicle, and explaining poorly where in Zamalek I would like to go, the driver stated something, in Arabic, opening his hand to show me five small white chalky tablets, much like aspirin, sitting there, chalky. My first guess was that these were some type of drug, and he was asking if I would like to purchase them. The interesting thing is that he already had them in his hand. I said no, thank you, but no. He stared at me and said something else, I do not believe he was asking me anything, hence, perhaps telling me something. He pointed to his side, and I distinctly heard the word “aswan” which makes no sense at all. Were these drugs from Aswan? Did I mishear? He let it go, I let it go, we drove on. Once on the bridge connecting Dokki to Zamalek, heavy in the afternoon with traffic, slowly dragging along, the taxi hailed a younger driver in another taxi to his immediate left. The man was on the phone, and again my driver told him something, and opened his hand to show him the pills. The younger driver stared at my taxi driver, looking not surprised or non-plussed, or anything at all really. He simply stared. Not talking on his phone, just keeping it to his ear. With no response, my taxi drove ahead. Seconds later he said something to himself, and dropped the chalky pills out his window, opening his hand and looking at it for a moment; to make sure, I imagine. Then he took me to my destination.

What were these magical white pills and what were they doing in the driver’s hand? What did he want from me, or the other taxi, and for that matter, what did he want at all?



Tags: cairo, drug, egypt, funny, pills, road, taxi, travel

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