I’m a born and raised Londoner writing and taking pictures under an Egyptianised pseudonym. In the search for sunnier skies, I moved to my parent’s homeland, Egypt, at the end of 2010 and returned to the UK in 2014.
Because I was born and raised in London, I was knighted with the feminine name Londoneya by relatives in Egypt for as long as I can remember. Until today, when they introduce me to a group of people, my real name disappears and my persona is cloaked with the city I have lived in all my life; almost three decades of it.
“Yes, this is the Londoneya I was talking to you about, isn’t her Arabic adorable.”
Although I was born and raised in England, my heritage is both Egyptian and Syrian, so I see myself as a bit of a hybrid; a butterfly fluttering from England to Egypt and back again.
Growing up, I knew I was a little different to the children around me at school, through little things like the unusual contents of my lunch box to why my second-grade school friends were making fun of my Egyptianised pronunciation of certain words like Mercedes or Tutankhamun.
Because where I was raised and my heritage is worlds apart, I struggled to fit in both worlds as a child. As I left my teenage years behind I grew comfortable in my own hybrid skin. Gone were the days of uncertainty and the sheer desperation to be accepted by both cultures. I celebrated my roots, rather than wanting to dye them blonde to hide my true identity; a young lady with a rich, cultural appreciation of life.
I started blogging just before I made the decision to move to Cairo, Egypt and Londoneya have journeyed with me for the three years I lived there. You can take a glimpse of the confusion I felt when I had to decide whether I wanted to move to Egypt or stay in England by making a short for and against the list. And when I made the decision I wrote about it here.
Perhaps it’s terribly unlucky, but as soon as I moved to Cairo the 2011 revolution kicked off, and the country hasn’t been the same since. But because I have had a love affair with Egypt since I was a little girl, I couldn’t help but enjoy the sunshine. I also have a love for cultural anthropology and it has been fascinating to learn about a very different culture up close and personal.
Now that I am back in the UK, a country I have missed immensely, my journey continues. I hope you stick around.
When I’m not writing on my blog, I’m regularly posting photographs on Instagram. You can also check out my Facebook Page, Twitter account, and Pinterest boards.
Thanks for taking an interest in Londoneya and happy reading,