ultramarinus – beyond the sea

SIWAN CHILDREN, Siwa Oasis, Egypt

2006.06.04.

During my short stay at the oasis, the people left me with the most lasting impression were the Siwan children. No matter how hot during the day, I could still find these kids outside their homes having fun. I often stopped my bicycle and asked these kids for directions. Some would point me towards the right direction, while others might introduce me to their friends from next door or show me their self-made toys. Sometimes I would ask if I could take a photo of them, and just holding my camera towards them would make them laugh for a long long time. It was June 2006, when Siwa was still a relatively unknown travel destination except for backpackers, and the world was far less connected before the emergence of iPhone and Instagram. The kids belonged to a much simpler world back then. It is interesting to look back at their photos. For me, they represent some of the warmest memories of my Egyptian experience.

I saw this kid at the back of the donkey cart more than once at the town centre.
I spent a bit of time with these kids on my way to the Temple of Oracle.
They were chasing each other in front of their homes.
They were friendly and delightful.
Some stood by their door and couldn’t stop laughing when they saw me.
This boy was on his way to the town centre for grocery.
These kids ran behind my bike for a short distance just to say hello.
These three children spotted me on my bike from their front porch.
I waved to them and they giggled back.
It is hard to imagine how their adulthood have turned out now.
I also met these kids who made their own toys with a rope, a few plastic bottles and sand.
The kid with the Real Madrid jersey showed me how his toy work: tying the sand filled bottles to their hands and running around with the rolling bottles.

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