This was in Ramadan, but thought I’d share in an attempt to make Ravine feel a bit better about our lovely public transportation system.
Today ladies and gentlemen I had me nothing short of an adventure. The day that has started out so ordinary with a twist of fate managed to encompass such a large number of highs and lows they formed the outlines of a marvelous adventure. I had bitched all day about having to be at two places at the same time for iftar, I got an instantaneous reality check and didn’t make it to either iftars and ended up eating in the street. I had it coming.
I had stayed after work to meet up with old friends, one of us headed home and me and the other got into my car and headed for Mohandseen. As we got into my car the engine hum was lightly louder than usual. I didn’t take it to heart, figured it was just the acoustics of the garage. I turned on the AC, cranked up the stereo and took off. I didn’t get far though, at the first traffic light in Tahrir square my car stopped. I tried to start it several times but to no avail. All of a sudden we were grounded in Tahrir square. Cars behind us started to honk and we made friends with the young police officer at the traffic light. We called our friend for help. He was already two metro stations away, he turned and came back. Another I interrupted his stay at Gezira club and he too came to the rescue.
As we waited for our knights in shining armor to show up every single driver and taxi driver in the neighborhood stopped and took a look at our stranded situation and put their 2 cents in. The policeman made considerable effort to inform the other cars to stay clear of us because our systems were down. We tried to get the car to start “amricany”; push and leave (like learning to ride a bike) while executing a complicated maneuver with gear shifting and turning the ignition while hitting the brakes. That kinda got us moving for a while. We got halfway around the square and ended up in front of Kentucky.
My other friend arrived at this point with jump start cables and we tried to jump start the car, needless to say that didn’t work either. We were threatened by the local police, given the option to have it towed to the nearest parking or removed entirely because the Minister of Interior was passing through. (I’d comment but I’m fasting). We had sent for the local mechanic, a young swindler who turned out to be a complete jerk and a total ignoramus (IDIOT). He tinkled around my engine for 2 hours before iftar. We then had to push the car to his shop, close it and go eat at Mc Donalds.
Ever seen Tahrir square empty in a way that you could walk in the middle of the street. I have, its 5:20 on a Ramadan day. It was actually nice, in the middle of this madness, strolling in Tahrir square while they messed with my engine, enjoying the sunset. What a sunset it was, the blazing sun descending into the clouds and casting shadows of red and orange on all the building.
I am anything but a McDonald’s fan, I really hate the place, I’m a devout Burger King/ Hardees fan. For years I’d heard AUCians claim that their McDonald’s is better than any other in the country. They could be right, I couldn’t tell, we were so tired and so hungry we would have ate anything.
After our meal we went back to the mechanic for another hour, he failed at the mission to fix my car. We had him close up and called a tow truck. The tow truck couldn’t reach us, so I had to meet him at the square and maneuver him to my car arriving high and mighty riding that tow truck. It was a fun experience, I felt like a young kid riding on a fire truck.
What happened next was even more interesting, 2 ramps descended from the truck and we pushed my car up to be sitting on the truck. We then climbed up and into my car. Never before in my life have I had such a royal view. We sat in my car with the windows down and stereo on. It was amazing fun, I was constantly hitting the brakes out of habit and we were driving from our high and mighty seat by signally to the driver. We were quite the attraction, people stared as we drove by and some even commented and tried to make conversation.”
My adventure ladies and gentlemen, mind you, is anything but over. I have to get up tomorrow at the crack of dawn to look for a mechanic with a brain and a very pricy spare part.
Special dedication and great thanks to Amr, Dina and Sherif. My partners in crime and the co-conspirators of this adventure. Thanks for coming through for me. On a final note, chivalry is not dead, it has just retracted and become concentrated in a small number of select individuals many of whom I’m proud to call my friends.
Sorry for ruining your day guys;thanks a million.