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I arrived in Egypt Friday morning at 2:00 am. Our first day was resting and some sight seeing as Friday is considered a weekend (Egypts weekend is Friday and Saturday). It is very warm here, 90 or hotter and feels like 100. It’s very dry and there are palm trees everywhere. There does not seem to be a lot of rules for cars, and people are walking everywhere on the expressways and roads. We have had really great drivers (friends of Dr. Nasr) so no one is concerned. We enjoy the honking sounds. Cars, trucks, whatever is on the road — people — they get very close to one another. This is a military Country. They have a President, who received 98 percent of the vote if you understand what that means. Abdel Fattah Saeed Hussein Khalil el-Sisi has been the president for 8 years. When entering Hotel Cairo Heliopolis or anywhere you have to go through a metal detector. The military is stationed everywhere. When we drive to our hotel, the car we are in is stopped, the driver shows their ID and the trunk is opened and visually searched. To enter Hotel Cairo Heliopolis you must go through security. The people here are so friendly. Some of the nicest people I have ever met. A funny car insurance story, maybe tongue and cheek: We were told a story that most people don’t have car insurance. If you hit someone’s car, as long as they apologize, you just leave the accident without paying for any needed repairs. That’s how nice and friendly people are in Egypt.

It’s a desert in many areas. The buildings are all brown, no pops of color. We were driven by beautiful mosques, and went into the mosque built by Mohamid Ali Pasha, he’s considered the founder of modern Egypt. He also initiated a violent purge of the Mamluks, We also saw the Citadel surrounding it. Beautiful. We walked barefoot on the marble floor because shoes can’t be worn inside.

But I am here because of cystic fibrosis. Saturday I met with doctors and some CF parents as part of my visit to Egypt. Dr. Samya Nasr traveled in June from the University of Michigan. She’s in charge of the pediatric pulmonologist department. She’s on a sabbatical in her native Country. I traveled with Dietician Stacey Fogerty-Brown. The first CF Mom I met was Izraa Lotfy whose 7 month old son Ali (he was recently diagnosed with CF). I shared a video on our FB page that shows our raw and personal conversation. Her son’s new diagnosis took me right back to Molly’s diagnosis day, and it knocked the wind out of me, unexpectedly, and I cried and cried with her. Interpreting for us was the wonderful and amazing Dr. Eman Fouda whom I adore (she did a podcast with me a year ago, great to meet her in person). The Egyptian doctors are doing wonderful work with the resources they have. I am proud to know them, and grateful to meet these doctors (all women) in person. I was also glad to finally meet Anas Mansour in person (he did a podcast with me a year ago), his twin boys (who have CF,) and his beautiful pharmacist wife, Iam aml. We have the same fears, worries, sense of community and desire to save our children’s lives. It filled my soul to talk with them both. The video is in their own words. Parents, no matter the Country should be able to get their children the meds needed to save their lives. #healthequity More blogs on this to come. I continue to shout the praises of Dr. Nasr who started out single handedly to raise awareness about CF in Egypt, she worked successfully to make sweat tests available, diagnosing 600 patients (and she expects to diagnose about 600 people) and she continues to fight for health equality for the CF parents in Egypt.