An ex: Hi ya 3assal. – Winking emoticon
Amnesiac: Yes hello.
An ex: How is job hunting going?
Amnesiac: There is a project which I might be joining, depending on funding.
An ex: Project eih?!? You’re going to open a mobile shop wala eih? Ha ha.
Amnesiac: Not yet.
An ex: What about human rights?? You’re not going to work in them anymore?
Amnesiac: It is a human rights project in a human rights organisation.
An ex: Mesh fahem 7aga khaales. [I don’t understand a bloody thing.]
Amnesiac: Eshta. [Marvellous] – Amnesiac puts foot through screen.
This conversation invoked the ‘Cerelac’ effect in me. When I was seven, my Mum decided that she really couldn’t live without Marks and Spencer and we moved back to the UK after we had been in Egypt for a year or so and my Arabic was just beginning to get good (ensuring that I forgot everything within a month). I had developed a taste for Cerelac while we were in Cairo, and was devastated to learn that its creamy reassuring fattiness wasn’t available in the UK. Either that or my mother had paid our supermarket to hide their stocks of it.
Anyway I pined for Ceralac with the intensity of a convict’s wife frenziedly knitting jumpers for her man, and upon our return to Egypt grabbed the first packet of Cerelac I saw between my sweaty palms like a crazed Crack addict. I got home and prepared a bowl of the stuff while the angels sang in the heavens and small fluffy birds tap-danced in the clouds, and then…first spoonful. Nothing much. Yes, sweet, but saccharine sweet…And watery…And just not as nice as I remembered it…And actually annoying, and how could I not see that we had nothing in common anyway?!?
After a lull, my friend the moustachioed stalker has returned with a new tactic: missed calls at ungodly hours. As a counter-attack I got the Pig to call the number stalker guy calls me from, using my phone so as to make this man (who is of limited intelligence) think that I sold my landline to someone and then killed myself out of sheer longing for him and his moustache – so that he will stop calling, though I think that even my expiring would not deter him. So the Pig rang, and informed the male voice which answered – in the Pig’s best gangster voice – that someone keeps giving him missed from this number, and 2elet 2adab and he should stop etc etc. To which the voice responded that he has never rung this number, and that “asly saa3at a7’oyia 7amada beye7’od el mobile.” [“Sometimes my brother 7amada borrows my mobile.”]
If I must have a stalker can I not have one with a bit of class? Not only does he have a bad moustache and wear green MC Hammer-style slacks, but he also has to borrow his brother’s mobile no doubt because he has run out of credit. Talk about bee2a! [‘Environment’ – literal translation is fun.] I have come to the conclusion that stalkers are like cars, and attest to one’s social status. I have a Fiat 128 stalker. Other, minor Z-list celebrities have stalkers who shower them with gifts, and leave dog poo on the doorsteps of people who criticise the object of their affections. For the love of God I admit full responsibility for the former boyfriends – who are nice people and all but suited me about as much as a leopard-print flared catsuit does. Must similarly unsuitable men be thrust upon me in the form of unsolicited stalkers?