Reality isn’t Paradise (content removed)

On this date I posted an entry about some negative events in Siwa, including an attack and rape of a foreign woman who lives here. I subsequently decided to remove that post (removed 10 October, 2011).

Apart from leaving out the details of my close friendships and relationship in Siwa (because I will not take liberties with the privacy of those people) I have tried to be straightforward in writing about the ups and downs of life here. But after what had happened I felt it was unfair to give a heavily edited look at Siwa life and pretend to readers that they are getting real insights, so I decided to include some less attractive reflections.

Call me a coward, but I then became concerned that by reporting these events I would jeopardize not only my safety here but perhaps that of others.

If you did not see the post and are interested, and are family or friends, email me and I will email you the blog entry that has been removed.

I do not like to censor, but as it may problematic for me to remain in Siwa if I run the information, I feel that I have no choice. The police now seem to be taking some action, but whether any real changes here will happen is doubtful.

Regular readers note this entry has nothing to do with the angst of my recent blog entry Inside out.

I will get back on track and address some of what prompted that odd entry and what has been happening in my life when I have more time and energy. Work and staying focused is the current priority, and for now the blog must wait a bit for me to catch my breath…

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4 Responses to Reality isn’t Paradise (content removed)

  1. I read that post and I think you were right to remove it,it’s not being a coward when it comes to safety.

    Good luck to you

    M.C

    • siwasoul1 says:

      Thanks MC and also thanks for you previous comment on the original post. It is always good to hear from regular readers, especially when they seem, like you, to understand the issues involved.

      I hope I can include some of the negatives of life here in more subtle ways in future posts, to give balance to the blog, but I am aware these issues need to be addressed sensitively. That sensitivity / caution is needed not only for readers outside Siwa who may not understand the culture, but because there will always by those in Siwa who will not appreciate an outsider’s point of view.

      I have made some good friendships here and I do not want to damage those, or alienate others in the community more than they probably already are by my perceived strangeness.

  2. I also read the blog a few weeks back and was interested in your decision to publish it. However, I understand, the sensitivity the locals must feel towards what happened, and feel your decision to remove it was wise.

    What a minefield it is attempting to show the more negative reality of oasis life. Stay strong.

    Zaynab.

    • siwasoul1 says:

      It is a fine line to tread, between venting frustrations with litter, attitudes to women (attitudes to foreign women especially) and other issues. I continue to have great affection for this place and most of the people I know here. I suspect when you saw the post your initial reaction may have been along the lines of “you go girl!”, but you can also understand the possible implications. SO much more to talk with you about when we next meet, too much to email you and many more things you will be interested to learn about here. My other blog readers will just have to miss out on that, at least if I want to remain in Siwa I won’t be able to publish these things….I feel a hypocritical not writing about these things, as I repeatedly get frustrated that the other women won’t speak about these issues either, only mutter among themselves about things, but I can see why they keep quiet. Really nothing would change anyway, and they would just be black listed.

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