Wednesday, January 19, 2011

My friend and colleague Nevine traveled to her motherland recently.  Her family left Egypt in 1975, rather abruptly, abandoning their lives there, and their apartment.  This is the first time they'd been back in those 35-odd years.  Here's the story straight from Nevine:

As newlyweds, my parents rented this apartment in New Cairo.  As a young engineer, my Dad received a great job opportunity in Dubai, so after only a short time, they left the apartment, planning to return after one year abroad.  Years later, after having two children, they felt it would be wise to raise us in Canada and never returned home.  They've been paying rent there since 1975, one day hoping to return and use the apartment as a summer home. This year they decided that after decades caked under dust and stale history, it was time to clean out the apartment.  

Sifting through their belongings was a very emotional experience.  It was exactly what I had expected it to be, right down to my father's scotch collection and a single chiffon housecoat hanging in the armoire.











Please visit Nevine's photo site for images of her trip and more of this history-soaked apartment.  Like some kind of alternate-reality MLS listing.  Thanks for letting me share, Nevine!


16 comments:

  1. This is absolutely amazing. These pictures are fantastic and this must have been such a surreal experience. The story is lovely, but I can't get over the pretty bedroom furniture. #soshallow

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  2. Chills. beautiful and spooky at the same time.
    What a lovely story. Made my day.

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  3. Wow. Nevine this is fantastic. I'm glad you got to experience it, must have been wild!

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  4. wow! what an amazing time capsule.

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  5. Thank you for sharing. The photos are beautiful!

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  6. Such a beautiful collection of images; an amazing opportunity that most of us would never have. I can still see the life in that apartment. The drawers, the shelves...

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  7. i don't even know what to say. this is beautiful, like a moment trapped under glass. breathless.

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  8. Wow I am amazed - how unreal that must have been! I can't even imagine. I loved Egypt when I visited. Can't wait to look at all the photos on her site.

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  9. Holy cannoli. I can imagine what a crazy emotional roller coaster it must have been for the family.

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  10. like a little time machine. this is truly beautiful, thank you so much for sharing it.

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  11. what an incredible story! I can just imagine how emotional it would have been to step back in time like that to a place frozen in time.

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  12. Wow! I can't believe they've been paying rent all this time. What an experience!

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  13. This gave me goosebumps on my head. Wow.

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  14. Utterly astonishing. It looks so pristine and pretty. I cannot understand how in 35 years this place didn't befall some sort of ransacking by either man or beast looking for a place to snuggle in.

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  15. This was my birthday. I remember seeing that calendar and thinking "1975! That was THREE YEARS BEFORE I was even born!"

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