29 January, 2011
This morning our phones are back on, for the moment. I hope they stay on long enough for me to call my parents and let them know I’m ok. No new news this morning so far.
Parents called at 4:30am their time. They were so worried. I feel bad that they have to experience this from afar with little news. I tried to comfort them as best I could, assured them that nothing is going on in this area. I’ll tell them the truth later, when it’s over.
Went to get groceries and observe the general goings-on around town. Discovered that most of the stores were closing early for the 4pm curfew. We got a few more veggies and chocolate, making jokes about hunkering down during the night. Then one of the roommates spoke to her sister and the word is that the police have been overtaken in Maadi and the protesters are going to wreak havoc all over the prosperous areas. Like ours.
So it’s coming to decision time: pack some things and go wait it out at someone else’s house, or stay here and risk the neighborhood. Getting nervous about being able to leave the country if things get really bad. Just nervous about the general demeanor of the city. The mood seems to have shifted from righteous indignation against the government, to general angst and unrest. A little more dangerous.
I don’t want to leave the country. I’ve had no thoughts of moving home or anything, despite the worry in my parents’ voices. I know it will come to an end, however, it may take a while. I live in Cairo. I’ll stay as long as I can.
Our neighbors are my heroes. They’ve set up small blockades at the ends of the small neighborhood streets and are manning them with sticks and clubbing devices. These are Egyptians prepared to protect their families and belongings. They’re so brave. We can still hear gunshots; some volleys have been quite close but they all seem to die away fairly quickly. The big concern is the looters.
School has officially been cancelled for this week. There are discussions of evacuations to Europe tomorrow. One small carry on is allowed. What do you take when you have to leave most things?
Flares or something mortar-like are going off near the closest midan. Rapid fire sounding. We have tv again but we’re not getting too much information from Al Jazeera. Going to try to stay up in order to stay informed. If they storm the area, I vote for barricading the doors.
Louder gunshots. Could see the fire from the guns over the neighboring roof. How close does that make them? I would look it up but we still have no internet…It’s technically the next day, time to start a new post.