Monday, 16 November 2015

Echoes From The Past — Alexandria in Photos

My first memory of Alexandria goes all the way back to when I was three and four years old. At the time, my father was appointed to Hotel Manager of the Montazah Sheraton and that was when we moved from Cairo to there. We lived in the hotel and I attended the mighty Collège Saint Marc for a year and a half — in Jardin D’enfants or Kindergarten. Then my father moved again to Saudi Arabia and I went back to Cairo to live with my grandparents and start a 13-year journey at the Jésuites.

The weird thing is that I never went back to Alex in my adult life until this last week — 34 years later. I spent three days which I used to visit as many places as possible and take as many photographs as possible. A sweet young woman, Laila, who had lived there all her life was my guide, and I must say she did a wonderful job in showing me around. 

Other than the sightseeing, she also took me to great places to eat; Chez Gaby is one of them, the Greek Club is another for an amazing sea food meal and a stunning view.

We also went to Spitfire, a really old cool bar downtown,
which was opened in 1883 by a Greek man, Dominus Kharalambo. Kharalambo adopted and raised 11-year-old Hassan al-Sayed Osman and his brother Fouad, who managed the bar.

Now to the outcome of the trip. Enjoy the photos.

Cairo Station where I found out that using the camera requires a permit, yet I able to snap a 
few shots.

 Alexandrian sense of humour
The view from Sheraton Montazah — more or less the same view I had 34 years ago
A pregnant street dog who looked in pain 

The mighty Collège Saint Marc:
For a four-year-old kid, I remember the halls were huge. The whole school is still huge,
but I think I grew a little.

The school from the inside brought lots of childhood memories and flashbacks


1ère Jardin d'enfants (1981-1982) at Saint Marc — I'm next to the blond kiddo, Pierre,
and Haissam is in front of us. Madame Madelaine (upper left), Madame Colette in front
of her, Madame Iman (upper right), and Madame Clara.
Making 3asaleya (molasses taffy candy) on Nabi Daniel Street

An old building belonging to Bank Misr on Talaat Harb Street

The Roman Amphitheater in Kom Al-Dikka:

“Ring the bells that still can ring. Forget your perfect offering.
There is a crack in everything. That's how the light gets in.”
— Leonard Cohen

A German Shepherd enjoying the view on Fouad Street
I began at the top left and kept getting closer to the window until the dog got curious and 
changed positions as you can see in lower right. I was standing in the middle of the street 
by then.
Boots UK was once in Alex, close to Fouad Street.

Alexandria Opera House, also known as Sayyed Darwish Theatre and
formerly Mohamed Aly Theatre, also on Fouad Street.

Saint Catherine Church in El Mansheya El Soghra

Bibliotheca Alexandrina:

From Knowledge to Wisdom

The Sadat Museum at the Library

Historical printing machines

Naguib Mahfouz


Herodotus' An Account of Egypt

View from the last floor of the library 
Artistic Mural at Bahari

Some political messages around the city, against Morsi then Sisi:

Apparently Delices has been open since 1922
Some unexplained bathroom signs
Hilarious lingerie sold in the middle of the Nabi Daniel Street that I couldn't miss capturing
Another view from the balcony of the Sheraton at a different time of the day
Eastern Port with a view of the 15th-century Citadel of Qaitbay


1920s Egypt in Colours

Words With Italian Origin That Are Still Used Today In Egypt
World Art Through My Lens

The Phenomenal Getty Villa in Photos

Early 1900s Paris in Colours
A Year at the Venice Beach Drum Circle in Photos & Videos

Some People I Shot

Some Soulful Travel Quotes

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  1. wow... didn't realize that we can say something like... 30+ years ago, and we would still be talking about ourselves... time flies! :)
    Love the article and images... it was an intense trip.. you've seen a lot of Alexandria (brings back a lot of memories)! - Saint Marc rules :D

    1. Thank you, Mickey. I loved the trip and having someone from there showing me around made all the difference in being able to visit all these places. We also ate at Chez Gaby and it was yummy, and sea food at the Greek Club. Spitfire is a really cool place. Will definitely do it again.

      I hope you're well, man :}