Thursday, January 10, 2008

Undergraduate Dinner in Luxor

Last night we had the opportunity for the six undergrads and Rev. Auman to meet
for dinner and talk about what this pilgrimage has meant to us. We decided to
go to a restaurant near our hotel in Luxor, and upon entering, I became very
excited when seeing one of the waiters. He was wearing a long black jallibyah
and a red fez cap on his head. It was pretty rad. We scourged the menu for
some remembrance of home, and three of us decided to go ahead and get "Giant
Iced Tea"in honor of W-S. It was pretty good Tea. While the food eventually
came and we ate with delight, we began to talk about Egypt and how our
experiences over the last two weeks have beenquite unique. We each spoke about
our favorite excursion, and while some enjoyed going inside the pyramid others
enjoyed the collosus Karanak Pillars. Our convesation then shifted to Wake
Forest, and how what we have seen in Egypt reflects the vast diversity which
exists in our world, a diversity which does not exist in the Wake "bubble". We
thought about what it would take to enrichen the Wake experaince without losing
what makes Wake "Wake." We also pondered the dynamic of being in a Muslim
country, one which is progressive, academic, and relativley open. Given the
portrayal of Muslims and Islam in the U.S., we eventually came to see that in
the end, people are people, and no matter their faith or sacred text, there are
common threads we all share. By stripping away labels and stereotypes, we are
able to find that humanity is a more powerful bond than a religion or race.

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