March 6, 2011

Little Differences

Just a little post about some of the small differences between the US and Egypt. Most of these things are pretty normal to me by now but to those outside Egypt, might be interesting.

We still have pull tab top soda cans.

And it's Coke Light. Not Diet Coke here.
A large percentage of Egyptians don't have gas lines, so we get cooking gas in these hideous propane tanks by the stove.

Milk comes in a box like this and doesn't need refrigeration. Like Parmilat in the US but it's become so normal to us now. I don't like the  fresh  milk here. It's just not the same. I find the Juhayna Skim tastes closest to the 2% in America.

The washing machine is in the bathroom. Some people even have it in the kitchen. I couldn't do that but yea, no dryers either.
Which brings us to: Everyone line dries their laundry in the balcony (which everyone has) Even the rich people. Well, their maids line dry their clothes.

Arabic Keyboard

Round plug. I don't know if it's just our apartment but these are so loose and the plugs fall out sometimes.
That's all I could think of today. Got any?


  1. I love this post! I kind of forget that these things aren't normal to people outside Egypt. Sadly we don't have a balcony as our flat is so little (1 bedroom) but I'm so excited to have one in our new home ISA.

  2. yeah people slap their rugs on the balcony.

  3. Amalia, I have a love/hate relationship with balconies. I love that you can have a table and chairs out there and have tea or people watch but I've always worried about the kids peering too far over the banister so I've never put any chairs or anything in there. Now I think they are old enough to know not to do that but my balcony is long and narrow.

    Sarah Bint Muhammad, true good one, Lol @ slap, yea more like beat the rug over the edge of the balcony. I never do that, I'll occasionally put it out there while I give the floor a good scrub but mostly, I just sweep and vacuum.

  4. I love this post too... good observations.

  5. Where do people in the US keep their washing machines? Almost everyone in Scotland keeps their washing machine in the kitchen too :)

  6. Assalamu Aleykum,

    Egypt and France have a lot in common actually.We also keep the washing machine in the kitchen or bathroom, milk is same (boxes or bottles which you can keep out of the fridge) and diet coke is called "Coca Cola light".Interesting to find out that there are more differences between 2 western countries than between France and Egypt :)

  7. Eman, thanks. :)

    Jaz, either a laundry room or mud room. Sometimes it just a place in the wall where the washer and dryer are set, there's the plumbing and connection for the dryer exhaust. Sometimes in the basement. Cool to know Scots do it this way too. Do you all line dry also?

    Um Zakarya, Interesting! I heard that in some parts of Canada they have milk in bags and they transfer it to a pitcher.

  8. You have a critic eye Mona. I lived in Lebanon for 2 years and never thought of talking about these things ;)
    What I hate the most was not having a dryer, especially in cold wintery days when it is nearly impossible to have school uniforms dry over night. I used to have the stand drying lines and put it inside the apartment so it’ll dry for the heat. I am so glad those days are over :)

  9. Dr N, Yea when it's really hot, I don't want to go out from the AC to hang it out and when it's cold and windy it's not fun either. It has to be done though and I'm used to it now.

  10. I think all this is common in the Middle East in general, I'm in Syria right now and recognize everything except for the washing machine in the bathroom...have yet to see that.

  11. Awww we had the SAMEEE washer in our bathroom!! oh how i miss the simplicity of life in egypt!

  12. Aaaaah milk in boxes!! That is the one thing I just couldn't bring myself to drink while in Palestine. I'm very picky about my milk.

    I totally think you can slap some decals on that propane tank and beautify it :-)

  13. Muslim Convert, So where do they keep it in Syria?

    Mi Amor Mi Iman, Lol, I do feel that life here is definitely less stressful and simpler.

    Amnah, We change it out every month or so but they sell these covers for them. I'll post a pic sometime.

  14. They usually keep it in the kitchen, I've seen some people keep it on the balcony

  15. :-) Some of those look familiar to me lol. Mostly from TZ, but my first apt had a washer in the bathroom too lol.

  16. hahah oh egypt. I lived there for a year when I was studying for school. I used to buy the Labanita milk containers and drink them like they were crack. It was so good and it tasted better for me then the milk in the states. I miss living there and went through serious reverse culture shock when i got to the states. Great post!

  17. um mohamed3:44 AM

    evry one uses TIIDE washing powder hehe even in dubai and expats in australia will buy it if they see it in mid east stores

  18. Is-za, lol, like they were crack. I bet I'd have the same experience, more so since I've been here so long.

    um mohamed, lol Yea I get it too.


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