Call Me Nubian
I must admit that the stories did leave me apprehensive and non-enthusiastic about coming to Egypt, there were so many flying around that I thought there must definitely be some truth in them. I mean, you can’t have so many different people telling you similar things for them to be untrue, right? So I was weary and super-vigilant when I got out here, so that I could be on my guard to protect myself from the onslaught I expected.
I can’t say I’ve been disappointed, though – the blatant racism that I was told that I would definitely face has yet to bear fruit. I’m not claiming that the ‘storytellers’ are liars, I couldn’t possibly attribute that to them, but I can gladly thank God that it has not been my experience thus far.
I find it fascinating that Egyptians would be considered to be racist, after all, they reside in a continent that holds millions of people of colour. My wonder about this notion increased when testing new students at work who seemed somewhat delighted and amazed that there in front of them, testing their speaking skills, was a woman with a headscarf on her head, who spoke impeccable English and was black! I got smiles and the consistent question of “Where are you from?” and then wider smiles. I even got questions like, “Why do people think we don’t like black people? We love them!”
Obviously the rumour of racist Egyptians had reached their ears, and furrowed eyebrows suggested that they were slightly hurt by it. I was hurt by it, because rumours usually never disappear, even when real-life contact can prove otherwise.
I love being who I am, and have no qualms or shame while out here. I secretly love the attention I get and the look of puzzlement on people’s faces when I open my mouth! It’s so comical to see jaws drop, and expressions that scream ‘say WHAT?!’ and I smile ever so sweetly, as you do! *grin*
I’ve been called Sudanese, Somali(!) and even Nubian, and out of the three I say, “Call me Nubian!” They have the most glowing skin, after all.
– The Londoner
p.s. The image depicted with this post looks nothing like me. But she’s gorgeous, ain’t she?