I am sure all of you heard the word “In sha Allah” before, especially if you’ve been to an Arabic country. Nothing strange so far!
This word means “God willing“, and it’s maybe the most common reply I get every day on Cairo’s streets. For example, it makes completely sense for me if I ask “How’s the weather going to be tomorrow?” and I get a “Sunny, In sha Allah” as an answer. Fair enough.
But I came across some very unusual way to use this expression. And I was a little bit like… what the heck? (I’ll try to explain better with the use of Giulia-emoticons! :D )
- A friend of mine went to the Mogamma (a government building in Cairo) to get a visa. She paid the stamps and after a while asked “Will I get my change?” “In sha Allah”. WTH?
- After work I needed a taxi to reach the metro station. I stopped a black cab (without meter, so you need to haggle) and told him “5 pounds, ok?” “In sha Allah”. I got on the taxi and hoped for the best. In the end I paid 5, as “agreed”!
- Today I was looking for a building in Downtown. I found the place but not the entrance, so I asked a man “Is this building n°22?” “In sha Allah”. Man, I could possibly understand the first 2 but… not this one!!! (Anyway yes, it turned out to be n°22).
So in the end it looks like it means “yes”… but with just a little bit of suspence!