It’s 2 am and I just came back home after a night spent at the ahwa (Egyptian word for café). The streets of the area around the stock exchange become an open air café at night, named after the stock exchange itself: Borsa.
So the Borsa café hosts hundreds and hundreds of people sitting on colorful chairs right in the backstreets of Downtown, smoking shisha, chatting, playing tawla (local game similar to Backgammon) and spending the night in big groups.
While you sip your tea or juice, a woman will literally throw a bunch of peanuts on your plastic table, scaring the hell out of you. After a while she will pass by again and if she sees that you ate them, then she will charge you. If not, she will collect them and throw them on another table.
Just a few minutes later a guy is walking around the tables trying to sell some uncategorized object covered in colorful leds. What is it for, nobody knows. But someone buys it.
A kid will try to sell you tissues, and another guy will claim the necklace he sells are made of real gold. Yeah, right.
We left the café and headed home. The streets were full of people and street vendors were still there with piles of clothes on their carts, and groups of people around them.
Tahrir Square was free from traffic but there were still dozens of pedestrians crossing coming out of nowhere.
A minute later, we witnessed a minor car crash and the scene was immediately surrounded by about fifty people in less than 10 seconds.
In narrower roads, kids were playing ping pong in the middle of the street, with a table and all.
A woman was yelling at a guy for some reason, and people were trying to calm them down.
The kiosks selling cigarettes and chocolate bars are open 24/7 and Mahmoud, the vendor of the kiosk next to my building, is always smiling and asking me to teach him one word in English every day.
Having a walk in Cairo is like having a bath in life. This is what I love of this city.