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Lesson Transcript

Hella: السّلام عليكم everyone.
Simon: Welcome, Simon here. All About, Lesson 6: 5 Things About Egypt You Have to Know. Test Your Egypt Knowledge.
Hella: Hello everyone, and welcome to another All About Arabic lesson. Today, Simon and I will be talking about a very interesting topic, as usual.
Simon: This lesson will build your basic knowledge of Egypt by quizzing you on five areas of knowledge on Egypt.
Hella: Geography, pop culture, travel, economics, and myths busting.
Simon: Sounds like fun to me. So what are we starting with Hella?
Hella: Geography. Now, Egypt has 29 provinces. Now, Simon, here's the question for you. Luxor, which I believe I don't need to explain or to talk more about it. Is it a city, a province, or a small city that is more likely like a village and it follows a governate?
Simon: Well, that's a tricky question, but it happens that I have done reading before going there. So I know that Luxor is a city, but treated administratively as a province.
Hella: Wow! That's impressive, Simon. Now, speaking about reading and learning, on 2008, two more provinces were added and some changes has been done to the borders of the cities.
Simon: Ok. That's very clear to me. How about the weather?
Hella: Egypt doesn't receive much of a rainfall except in the winter months, and that is also not much. It depends, of course, if you're in a city by the coast. Something like Alexandria, Port Said, of course you'll get a lot of rain, but the rest of the cities such as Cairo, Luxor, Aswan, Upper Egypt, not that much really. Also the temperature it averages between 80 Fahrenheit or 27° and 90 Fahrenheit and that is 32°. In summer, of course. And it goes up to 109 Fahrenheit, that is 43°, on the Red Sea coast.
Simon: Temperatures average between 55° Fahrenheit, 13° Celsius, and 70° Fahrenheit, 21° Celsius in winter. A steady wind from the northwest helps hold down the temperature near the Mediterranean coast.
Hella: Yes, but the خماسين , that is a wind that blows from the south in Egypt in spring, it usually brings sand and dust. Sometimes, it raises the temperature in the desert to more than a 100 Fahrenheit, or 38 Celsius. Now, Simon I'm sure that doesn't sound like good news to you. We really have a hot summer in Egypt. Now, what is the hottest weather you have witnessed here?
Simon: There was a recent heat wave and it got beyond 40°.
Hella: Yes, and what did you do during that time?
Simon: I suffered a lot.
Hella: Ok. Did you stay home? Go out?
Simon: I wanted to stay indoors in the air conditioning.
Hella: Ok, yeah, I think we all did. But at night the weather is much better.
Simon: It's a lot nicer at night.
Hella: Yes, That's of course being in a city like Cairo, but being in a city by the coast, it's much different. Ok. So far so good. Now let's try a pop culture question. I'm going to name three people. One is a famous singer, the next is a politician, and finally a sports star. Match the name with the person. Are you ready, Simon?
Simon: Yep.
Hella: Ok, so we have, Ahmed Mido, Amr Diab and Mohamed Hassanein Hekel.
Simon: Well, that's not that hard for me. I always listen to Amr Diab, so he's the singer. I love watching Mido play football, so that’s our player, and I have heard about Mohamed Hassan Hekel from nearly everyone as the best politician, even if he likes to stay away from the lights.
Hella: Wow, Simon. I'm impressed again! Ok. Let's try a travel question. Rank in correct order, the most popular travel destination in Egypt. Would that be Sharm El Sheikh, Luxor and Aswan, or Cairo?
Simon: Well this is a little tricky. I would say Luxor and Aswan, Cairo and then finally Sharm El Sheikh.
Hella: Perfect. Now, some people might disagree with you and start with Cairo, Sharm El Sheikh and Luxor or Aswan, or Cairo, Aswan, and Sharm El Sheikh. It's really the same. It depends on your resources. Ok. How about an economic question.
Simon: Yep, I'm ready.
Hella: Ok. What is the biggest resources for Egypt economically? What provides the biggest income yearly?
Simon: Well, that's got to be tourism, surely.
Hella: Ok. I kind of thought you would say that. Do you have another one in mind?
Simon: Yeah, second is the Suez Canal. I've seen it and it's amazing. I know for a fact that it represents a huge part of the Egyptian economical income.
Hella: And that is 100% correct again. Not many people would have thought about it. That's a good job.
Simon: Thanks Hella. And finally, I would say the agriculture in general.
Hella: Fantastic! A really good job, Simon. You have been doing your homework.
Simon: شكرا . So how about you debunk a myth for me? Tell me about an Egyptian myth. I want the whole story.
Hella: Ok. I think that's an easy one. The most famous myth about Egypt is the Pharaoh’s' Curse. Now it has been known long time ago, even during the days of the pharaohs themselves that if someone opened a tomb that belongs to a pharaoh he receives a curse that will horribly and terribly end his life. He will suffer, probably some members of his family as well. Of course, that didn't really fool a lot of thieves, who did manage to go into the tombs and steal all the treasures it had inside it. But, interesting enough, the whole issue was raised up again when the tomb Tutankhamun was discovered. The reason for that is that all the people that contributed one way or another in the finding and the opening of this tomb has died and they suffered from a very strange fever that until today, no one knows what it was, how it happened. Some people might say that it's germs or some kind of bacteria that might have lived inside the tomb for thousands of years. And, yes, maybe the pharaohs did spread it themselves or put it there themselves, who knows. But, in argue to this point, I would say that some of these people who died after the discovery of Tutankhamun hasn't even been there. Not even once. Some of them were even in England, and they were nowhere near any of the monuments or treasures that were found, and yet all of them died within month to three months of the discovery. So I think this is the biggest issue right now. The Pharaoh’s Curse.
Simon: Wow. That sounds quite freaky and quite scary, but very interesting.
Hella: Ok. Thank you, Simon. So I guess I'll be seeing you in our next lesson.
Simon: Yep. Make sure you join us for Lesson 7 at ArabicPod101.com. Bye-bye.
Hella: مع السّلامة