Saturday, April 26, 2008

Egyptian sense of time

It really gets on my nerves the way Egyptians deal with time. I can't think of a better discription than ( dis-respect ).
If you decide to meet up with almost anyone at 8:00 p.m, you'll probably end up meeting at around 10:00.
If someone tells you he'll be late for just 15 minutes, he probably means that the earliest he can arrive is after 15 minutes. Usually it's never 15 nor 30 minutes it revolves around an hour or more.

I for myself used to be a very punctuate person, I learned from my dad to arrive 10 minutes ahead of any appointment. The Egytian timing has affected me big time, now I'm usually late for any appointment by 15 minutes ( this is un-acceptable on my scale )..

On going out with my friends ( they have terrible sense of time, that's if they have any ), I used to be the first to arrive. I was late for an hour on purpose, so as not to wait for long , BUT I usually had to wait for another hour or more.

Here's just one incidence: We had planned a Ramdan iftar at Mo- Cafe last year. I arrived at the restaurant 30 minutes before the Maghreb prayers ( which I thought was late for iftar outings, if you know what I mean ) I wasn't surprised to find myself the first to arrive. What made me laugh was 15 minutes before the Maghreb prayers, I was still on my own & recieved this call from N : " I was certain you'd be the only one in the restaurant. Could you please take my order , so that it's ready when I arrive "...........................

3 comments:

Sou said...

I face the same thing with my friends! Mind you it isn't an Egyptian thing, it's an Arab thing. The majority function on Arab Standard Time (AST); 8pm means 9:30..etc.

Last week my friends and I were supposed to meet up for dinner at 7:30 pm...I was there at 7:15, and they showed up at 8:45. I sat there all alone till they showed up, and you know, I don't know whose fault it is, mine for abiding to correct timing or them for never being on time!

Oh well...

gjoe said...

Essara7a ya Belya I was embarrassed reading this. I do disrespect time. But I wasn't always like this. Zaman,kont law et2a7a'rt ba7'od el mawdoo3 3ala a3saby awy..But I have "gained" the habit of being late 3ashan simply "law et2a7'art, nothing really matters"..I know you are probably pissed off by now..so I'll stop typing :)

Belya said...

Sou: 7elwa 7ekayet ( AST ) dih. Stay punctuate, I don't want us to be drifted away with the flow.

Gjoe: I don't get pissed off by this subject now, kan zamaaan. Bass 3arfa, I want to change the fact that nothing really matters. I'll try to think of something ;)