My thoughts on the bombing in Cairo, the Egyptian Revolution turning 3 and The Square.

Last night I went to sleep with the news of another bombing happening in Downtown Cairo streaming through my Twitter feed. Sadly bombings in Cairo have now become common place and of course any time I hear about a bombing in Cairo my first thought is to hope my Ex Boyfriend is okay along with his family, my friends and the rest of Egypt. I try not to get worked up about it all because Cairo is fucking huge and even when they narrow it down to downtown you are still talking about a huge area of the city. Like usual though I send him a message on Facebook of what I have heard happened and hoping he is safe. I don’t ever expect a response immediately, because he doesn’t have WiFi at home and I normally hear from him once a day briefly or every few days (yes we are no longer together, but we still talk just about every day).

After tossing and turning worried for several hours trying to go to sleep last night I did get some sleep. This morning though I woke up to this message from him:

“I wished u were here so I could just hug u.”

I then immediately checked his Facebook status and found out the bombing was down the street from where he lives. I hope he doesn’t’ get upset at me for sharing his status, but I am because I started crying and was filled with anger and want people to realize the reality of what is happening in Cairo.

Bombing in Cairo on January, 24, 2014

(I cropped out his name for his safety.)

As I write this I am at a loss for words and in tears, but know I must. According to the news their have now been 4 bombings in Cairo today. The crazy thing is this is all happening on the Eve of the 3rd year anniversary of the start of the Egyptian revolution. I still remember where I was when it all started on January 25, 2011 and how I was in bedroom glued to CNN, because I couldn’t believe my eyes. I then remember not knowing if I was going to be able to go to Egypt at all during my trip around the world and well we all know what happened a few months later on… when I actually arrived in Egypt (that’s when I met him). I remember being in Tahrir Square on the 1st anniversary and 2nd anniversary of the revolution, I remember going to vote with him and then celebrating with him in Tahrir Sq the results of the elections.

Ahh I have been following what has been going on in Egypt for 3 years now and a part of me still feels so helpless. I will always feel helpless because this is not my battle and nothing I do will change what is happening over there. So I write and share my thoughts and hope others become more informed and realize that we are all Egypt, because like Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once said,

 “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere”.


(A piece of Street Art found near Tahrir Sq. while I was living there.)

Recently a documentary was released, The Square about the Egyptian Revolution and is now even nominated for an Oscar for Best Documentary.  I have been wanting to write about the Oscar nominated documentary since I watched it for the first time a week ago, but like usual I have the hardest time writing about something when I have a lot to say or get emotional about it. One of my good friends Katie wrote a post about the documentary after she watched it, “The Square: Personalizing the Egyptian Revolution” here is a synopsis of what the documentary is about in her words:

“The Square is the story of that revolution, starting in January 2011 and continuing today.  It takes you into the lives of several of the protestors: Khalid, a foreign-born Egyptian actor; Magdy, a member of the Muslim Brotherhood who was tortured under Mubarak’s regime; Ahmed, a regular guy-turned-revolutionary from a working class neighborhood; Ramy, the unofficial singer-songwriter of the revolution; and Aida, a fiery young woman who set up the first tent in Tahir Square.  You hear their stories, their motivations, their hopes and their desires. You watch as they occupy Tahrir Square day in and day out. You follow them as they run from police bullets. You listen as they cheer Mubarak’s downfall and celebrate the unity of Muslims and Christians to bring about the revolution, proudly claiming they are all Egyptians. You see everything that the mainstream media glossed over or never bothered to show in the first place.” – Katie Aune

And here is the preview to The Square

The film is directed by Egyptian-American documentary film director Jehane Noujaim. She is able to beautifully capture 3 years of the revolution into a 1 hour and 45 minute documentary. She goes behind the headlines and makes you see what it has been like to be at the center of it all in Tahrir SQUARE from different points of views of the people fighting it. She is also able to take you inside and bring you up to speed on everything that has happened the last 3 years and that is no easy task, because for those of us following it or living it know it’s been crazy and sometimes even hell. For many Egyptians they now just want things to go back to normal, but what is normal now? Of course the most amazing and yet tragic thing of it all is that 3 years later the people of Egypt are back at square one.  The people of Egypt are back under military rule from the same military that was oppressing them at the start of it all 3 years ago. What’s next? When will it end? Are the questions many ask, but lets not forget that it took 16 years from the Boston Tea Party to the election of George Washington.

Even though I spent 7 months living in Cairo and was there during many key moments of the revolution I will never know how it feels to be Egyptian and what it feels like to be trapped under the grip of military rule and not feel free. The only thing I can do is make this personal and by sharing my connection to the revolution, because by knowing someone who is affected by something you are more likely to care about it. The documentary  is now available on Netflix and know many people have access to it and hope people watch it to be informed.

Egypt Revolution - Tahrir Sq.

(Photo of Tahrir Sq. on the 1st anniversary of the Revolution.)

So for now though we must wait to see what happens next. We are witnessing one of the most amazing revolutions of man kind happen right before our eyes and I pray that those who have died have not died in vein. I rarely pray, but I pray for a better future for the people of Egypt.

I have since talked to my Ex and he & his family are safe and he did give me permission to post the photo of his status update on here. He also mentioned his anger towards the Military because he knows it was them who did it, but will blame the Muslim Brotherhood so that tomorrow on the 3rd year anniversary if their is bloodshed they will be excused and use this as the reason why. He is not a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, but just wants a better Egypt and is fighting for it. In Cairo it’s actually already going to be January 25, 2014. Happy 3rd birthday Egyptian Revolution!

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  1. The whole post is beautiful and sincere. As an Egyptian, I appreciate your caring and your empathy, something many western journalists don’t do.
    The whole post is fine until the last paragraph whereby you say that your boyfriend believes it is the military which is killing its own. This is utter nonsense, a convoluted way of looking at thing. Please don’t believe him.
    Here is my take of yesterday’s and today’s events. “Another year gone by” http://azzasedky.typepad.com/egypt/2014/01/another-year-passes.html

    • Jaime Davila says:

      Azza, thank you for your kind words. I have nothing but empathy for Egypt & it’s people. On this day the 3rd anniversary of the revolution I am in shock at everything I am seeing unfold in Cairo. As for what my Ex said those are his words and his thoughts. Everyone is entitled to their own opinions that is what democracy is all about. As for if I believe him or not I am not sure, but I do know I do not trust the military or the police. Just look at what they have done to y’all now? Y’all can’t even go out and protest peacefully with out being arrested unless you are protesting in their favor. That is not democracy and never will be. They are holding y’all under a grip iron again, that will take a lot of time and blood to break. I seriously hope for the best as the revolution continues, because it’s not going to be easy. Thank you so much for your comment though & I agree it is another year gone by… but what will the next one hold?

  2. Just horrible. I can’t imagine how that must’ve felt to try and sleep with that news. So glad your ex and his family are OK.
    Sam recently posted..Greens Organic, Cusco

    • Jaime Davila says:

      I know Sam I can’t imagine either. When I finally talked to him and he told me the story I just couldn’t believe it. THanks I am glad they are all safe too.

  3. OMG sweetie! Thank you very much for writing about what’s going on in Egypt right now. My heart goes out to you and the people in Egypt. It is unfortunate how uncivilized we (humans) can be and how much pain and suffering we can inflict on one another. Still hope carries us forward to days when we will realize our wrong and embrace peace in every corner of the world. I also rarely pray but definitely will pray with you for the liberation of our minds and hearts through peace, respect and understanding so these senseless oppressions stop and we can finally love/support one another across cultural differences including religion, social economic status, and sexual orientation, etc. Love youu!

    • Jaime Davila says:

      Thank you so much Lucero, I feel the same way you do. I sometimes just don’t understand how we can do this to one another. It’s hard to understand sometimes. I love you too & miss you tons. I seriously hope our paths cross in Latin America when we are both back on the road.

  4. I’m so sorry this happened, the specific bomb near where he lives and the insanity in general. I really do hope they can start seeing some changes for the better soon. I can NOT imagine what it’s like to be there, to live that life. BTW that last picture is still one of my absolute favorite pictures of yours.
    Ali recently posted..Freezing Fun With Ice Sculptures in Poznan

    • Jaime Davila says:

      Thank you so much Ali, it is insane and just heart breaking. I worry about him all the time. It’s overwhelming sometimes & thanks about the last picture. Can’t wait to have that framed one day.

  5. so effing terrible
    Hogga recently posted..Why Everyone Should Go Eat a Pecker

  6. I cannot imagine how frightening this must have been for your ex. I hope that the elections later on this year will bring some peace to the country. The Egyptians deserve it after so much suffering!
    TammyOnTheMove recently posted..Making little friends on the Uros Islands, lake Titicaca

    • Jaime Davila says:

      Tammy, hearing him tell me everything scared me. I worry for him every day. Things are getting worse & worse. I hope that things get better for the sake of him and all the people of Egypt. They don’t deserve all this unrest, but know it’s the path to a true democracy.

  7. It’s a horrible situation, made worse knowing that there is very little we can do to help! If I’m honest, I’ve slowly forgotten about the situation in Egypt over the last three years, since the revolution was big news. Thanks for reminding me about it though, will be checking out The Square soon.

    • Jaime Davila says:

      Thanks Catherine for the comment. I’m glad I was able to remind you of what is happening in Egypt. I hope you do check out the Square and I hope you enjoy it and that it gives you more insight on what is happening over there.

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