“Beauty always has an element of strangeness… simple, unintended, unconscious strangeness [which] gives it the right to be called beauty.”
Two Egyptian masons take time to greet me as I walk along a bridge in Manial, an island in Cairo. They shout, Kol Sinna wa enta Tiyeeba...may your year be delicious! Although this is a typical greeting for a birthday or a feast and,sometime just to wish someone well, it is, of course, the greeting for the New Year.
With all the complexities and insecurities of the 2016, it has been difficult for me to say, “Happy” New Year, knowing that 2017 continues a grim reality for millions of people suffering from inadequate food and shelter, stripped of their identity and country as communication breaks down everywhere. So today, when I met these two masons who unreservedly communicated goodwill, within those seconds, my emotional response was that of gratitude… for standing on this bridge, at this moment and feeling beauty of tender gratitude.
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