I was reading Rueben Abati’s The Lonely Women of Port Harcourt (The Guardian Newspapers, Friday August 31, 2007) when the plane made a sudden bend towards my side. I was concerned (well, who wouldn’t be) because we were flying over what I thought was an impressive strech of red surface. I took a look to my side and got the message — the pilot actually did that deliberately, to have us enjoy a better view of the impressive mountains. It was a one hour journey between Cairo and Sharm El-Sheikh, and I must confess that the views were worth all the flaunting. Another look and I knew just had to get my camera to take a few pictures but… the lights were turned on — ahead of the descent. That word beauty must be what God had in mind when weaving those Sinai mountains. Unfortunately, my return flight is at night so I only hope I can get good pictures while in Sharm.
The flight arrived about 15 minutes ahead of schedule, and I think we have the windspeed to thank for that (which also explains the near-difficulty we had with landing). Those few minutes spent getting set for the doors to open proved useful as I had a quick chat with one of the organizers (Randa, the beautiful woman who sat beside me all-flight long) — and I had to tell her how pleased I have been with the logistics around this whole event. All around me, there are young men and women wearing white T-shirts with Youth Speak, We Listen boldly printed on them. I hope to combine work, rest and fun over the next few days and look forward to my presentation tomorrow morning. With the theme, Building Bridges across Geographical Boundaries, the moderator is the never-tiring, always-inspiring Walda Roseman, the CEO of Compass Rose International. Other speakers include my friend, Jennifer Corriero of TakingITGlobal, Mahmoud Shalaby from Cairo University, and Hanan Ouna, an International Telecommunication Union Youth Forum Fellow (like myself). I plan to speak on The Boundary in My Head.