17th Oct., 2009
Atbara (north), I was not very excited about going there because they told me the weather is hot and there is nothing to see there but the Nile. But I found out that it is not just the Nile. Some of Atbara’s streets have Beautiful leafy trees which reminded me of Maadi – except that the former is much wider. They have all kinds of trees – tall, short, big, small, neat and trees that forgot to comp their hair :) Then off we went to the Nile – the widest I saw! And on the other side, it’s ALL green. We all sat on the bank and had a fruity breakfast and gabna (traditional Sudanese coffee) – peacefully blissful. Reluctantly, I left to finish today’s work and told my colleagues that we will be heading to the Nile when we are done. (Side note: I wonder if people do what I want because they love me, they are nice or because I am demanding!)
When we were done with our work, it was around 45 mins before sunset. Before leaving the hotel, I heard some buzz among the women I was working with, amazed looks on their faces. And the reason was that it was RAINING (YES!). It NEVER rains in October but I think when you want something bad enough, and you wish for it with all your heart, it just happens :) “Yalla yalla, we have to run to the Nile” was my hurrying voice. It was not raining heavily and the mighty river had small, running waves. I sat there, enjoyed the little dusty and rainy storm. Then a police officer dismissed us from the bank because it was almost dark. We strolled in the wide streets enjoying the mild rains and the big, old trees. We found a modest café where we sat and ordered gabana again. Then it started raining heavily. My colleagues took some shade while I sat, opened the palm of my hands, rested them on my knees, and closed my eyes. When my clothes became soaked, I felt that shiver that I miss so much. I remained silent and listened with my heart to what rains had to tell me.
18th Oct., 2009
A quick review of Atbara trip made me reach the conclusion that I am not a dull, boring person after all :) I like exploring new stuff (I rode “tok tok” for the first time in my life!), I absolutely enjoy seeing new places but two things have to be secured to have peace of mind and heart for me; safety and insects-free places. Well, I have to admit I was very restless and almost terrified in the “tok tok”; had to clutch to the back of the front seat imagining that I’ll fall off the open sides at any moment but luckily the experience went well. In fact, the second time I rode it, I enjoyed the open vehicle compared to the imprisoning cars. Now I am thinking how would it feel like going to work every day by bicycle!