Wednesday, May 26, 2010

A Boy and His Dog

Are you visiting Egypt in the next few months from the US? Are you flying to the US from Egypt? Are you flying KLM, Lufthansa, or Air France? Then you can help Josh get his dog.

I recently came across this video posted on Facebook:

It was shot by a guy named Josh from Kentucky who had visited Cairo earlier in May. He was heartbroken by this Baladi dog who was in front of his hotel. Josh contacted ESMA - an animal rescue here in Cairo, and they successfully caught the dog. Now, Josh is going to keep his promise to adopt the dog who he has named Sphyncus Nagat.

By the time I saw this video the dog had been caught and ESMA was posting it looking for volunteers to transport this dog to the US. I happened to by flying at the end of June - I even had an extra dog crate in my possession - so I contacted ESMA. I told Mona that I would only take the dog with me if the adoptive parent lived within a 200 mile radius of Evansville, Indiana - the place I would be flying to, or if the adoptive parent was willing to fly or drive to Evansville. I wondered to myself what the odds of that would be. Much to my surprise I found out later that day that the his name was Josh and he lived in Bowling Green, Kentucky (that's pretty darn close to Evansville). I should have played the lottery as well. It sounded like things were going to fall into place nicely and Josh started a fundraising project to raise money needed for the crate and the cost of transporting the animal. I would show up at the airport, check the dog as a piece of luggage, and Josh would meet me with balloons and streamers in Evansville to pick up his dog.

Well, not so fast on the sighs of relief and the applause. It seems we have a slight problem. Anyone who knows me knows I always fly Delta. Yes, I am a dedicated Delta patron. Even more so since Delta started flying direct between Cairo and JFK in New York. Sure, I can still get my air miles on Air France or KLM - but why go through the hassle of hanging around in European airports when you can be in NY in 12 hours. So, I'm booked on Delta for the end of June. We found out the bad news today that Delta is unable to fly an animal as luggage between May and September. (Note: as of this writing I have yet to confirm this with Delta or verify the reason. I suspect it has something to do with an embargo in place restricting flight for animals in cargo when the temperature is too hot or too cold. I was aware of this previously but thought it only applied to certain breeds that were more susceptible to heat stroke.)

So now Josh is seeking assistance from anyone who might be flying from Cairo to the US in the next month or two. If you are, and you can help - please contact me through my email: or contact Mona at ESMA. All expenses will be paid.

If you can help Josh out by making a donation, please visit his ChipIn Page.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Culture Shock

This is hardly a scientific observation, just an informal one made as a result of many conversations with friends and other expats living in Egypt. It seems that Americans have a harder time adjusting to life in Egypt than any other nationality. Americans seem to complain more and longer about living here. The length of time Americans stay living in Egypt is far less than that of other nationalities.

What are your opinions, theories, and observations about this?