Thursday, April 28, 2011

bird song....

so,the last of my April house guests left this morning...

 Julia is off back to Holland...after a bellydance exciting 2 weeks, filled with classes and going out and fun sparkly stuff! Last night she had a class with Marte (from Norway) and said it was one of the best classes she had ever had in Cairo! (Marte teaches private classes in my dance studio on request- bare in mind if you are planning a trip here!!!). This morning after packing Julia also took a private class with me.... which we both really enjoyed too... just wish the flight was later on so we could have had more time for more dance! I MUST remember to book in private classes at the beginning of people's stay- otherwsie the time just flys and it doesn't happen (does it Christina, Eshta, Simone etc etc !!!) too busy partying usually!!!!

 and now Hotel Bellylorna feels very empty.... all i can hear is bird song from outside my balcony!!

not for long though- I have 2 dancers from Northern Ireland coming over in 15 mins for a private class, which we'll do before heading along the street to Ameras to see her fabulous pharonics costumes!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

April Madness...

It was been a crazy and wonderful month!
Hotel Bellylorna has been full and overflowing with dancers from all over the world... a fabulous atmosphere to be in!

I bought lovely red roses on sunday 2 masssive bunches for only 20le (from a lttle boy on a street corner in Zamalek) ! There are somethings, like that, about life in Egypt that make it easy to have a beautiful life!

Work has been picking up too...

...granted its been a holiday weekend here in Cairo- with the coptic Easter celebrations linking into the Egyptian celebrations of Shem al Nessim yesterday.

 My audiences these last 3 nights have been in full party spirit.. with a huge majority of Egyptians who seemed to enjoy my dancing as much as I enjoyed dancing for them! THESE are the nights that keep me in this country- whatever is going on, even through a revolution! Last night at the end of one show- i was taking my bows... and this old lady jumped out her seat- ran onto stage... and said she MUST book me for the daughters wedding!!! while I was still on stage! Lovely to be able to inspire that kind of reaction... Ya rabb (oh god) give me lots of those types of audiences please!!!! oh and held a really cute baby for a photo and she was wearing a tartan dress.... wonder if i can somehow get a copy of that pic... hmmm....

Had a lovely relaxed day at the pool yesterday too- the Atlas Zamalek Hotel in Mohandiseen has a pool on the roof and they charge 60le- but that is a minumum charge so the 60 is deducted from your food/drinks bill at the end of the day, asssuming you spend over 60le! The pool isn't great- but if you want sunshine... then its a good place to be! Julia (guest who's a dancer in Holland) and i had a few lovely peaceful hours there.

Also last week i went back to Salsa for the 1st time in ages and ages- i had such a good time at Bian Cafe (mohandiseen), I maybe sat out about one song in 3 hours?! That s what i call exercise!

talking exercise-

... i am also now attending golds gym in mohandiseen.... its small , but they have everything you need, plus the 5 star changing rooms and fabulous- sauna, jacuzzi, steam room.... I think i died and went to heaven! The personal trainer pushes me enough to make me feel like I have earned the spa treatment after too- perfect!!!

oh- and I have a new spa/beauty salon- on my street. Its a bit 'baladi'... but affordable and the girls are very entertaining!!!! in fact- off there now.... 50le for manicure + pedicure... can't really complain can you?

what will May bring.... oh- Eshta is moving here from London to live (and work as a singer isa!). Maybe i should rename my place Hotel EllieLorna?!!! 

....... and Randa Kamel week long course from 21st May... yes- i think this is going to be a good month!!!

Monday, April 04, 2011

Rainy days and sundays....

Thunder and lightening and rain all day yesterday!

It's amazing how Egyptians react to this weather, a bit like Brits do to snow, no one goes out! Mind you- when it rains here, because it doesn't very often, the air is so filthy that the rain pulls the dirt out of it as it falls and lands black on the ground (or on you- not the day to be wearing white!!!). I love Cairo - but I hate the pollution. It's even more obvious when you feel the difference in air quality after the rain!

I however, being hardened to such weather from a life in Scotland, went out with 2 friends last night, Laura from N. Ireland and Johara from London . Johara is the creater of - it has among other things, a fabulous long listing of restaurants in London where you can go to see bellydance performances!!!

We went to a fabulous Egyptian Cafe called Khamseena, which is in Mohandiseen, near the Zamalek Atlas Hotel. The food is good Egyptian fare and tasty, big portions ( The sheesh Tawook - ie chicken kebab is to die for!) and there is sheesha and Amazing live music there too. They have 3 different singers who work through the night (starting around 8pm ish and going on til the place shuts). i love the female singer best. She started last night at 10pm has a voice to die for- with a wicked sense of humour to go along with it, which makes her a fabulous entertainer! It was a great night!

This is going to be a busy week... Eshta ( London dancer/ teacher and organiser of arrives tonight), Then Athena and Elena of Greece arrive on Friday ( ) and then 2 dancers from Estonia arrive on the 10th! Hotel Bellylorna will be busy this month, and a lot of fun!!!

All i can hear writing this is the sound of boys on my street playing football , and birds singing... Life is good.

Saturday, April 02, 2011

Moving and shaking

well- the earth moved for me yesterday. In many ways!

In the afternoon I was in my dance studio doing some stretching since tonight would be the 1st night back to work in a week and I was feeling a bit stiff and sore from lack of activity!!! Trying to reach that hard to stretch bit in my back... and then i could feel a gentle rocking motion helping me reaching it... the rocking got stronger and then i realised that the chandilers were swinging too... an Earthquake! A friend called  in panic, 'Lorna, we're having an earthtremor' I replied' I know - it's lovely isn't it?' Have to say it was not the response she expected!!! However it really was a lovely moment in my life feeling as if the earth was with me trying to help me stretch... and esp lovely since it measured 5.9 seemingly and no damage occurred. Made me think more how it must have felt to be in Japan recently- but i still can't imagine it. My heart goes out to them!

More moving and shaking went on last night when i went to work. I was so excited because BOTH boats (Nile and Golden Pharaoh ) sailed last night- and the golden had a late sail too- business is picking up!!! I was especially excited to see that my boat had 2 decks on it... not had that since january! Then it got even better because it was Nadi Zamalek, and the Tunisian football team had fully booked out one deck- We had a LOT of fun! I dont think i have danced so well, and so della'a (cute/flirty) maybe ever. It was so nice to hear so much appreciation.. without any sleezy comments at all which often accompany an almost all male audience. They were commenting and joining in- but in a fun, respectful way. There were lots of the teams pro-photographers there too- wonder where those pics will end up- maybe some team magazine or something.. wish i could see that! I'll be dancing on the Golden Pharaoh 8th- 11th April and really looking forward to more work (not many people can say that can they?!!!)

Then- the night was still young... so my friends and i moved onto Mandarin, at the Armada boat on the Maadi corniche for a friends birthday party- that was an all night event! Well- you could of course leave before 2am which is when the curfew is from these days- but if you chose to stay after 2- then you were chosing to stay til 5am when curfew was lifted! An enforced party! I loved it! A good crowd, mix of music ( although more house music than i could fully enjoy) and if it got too much at any point they have a sheesha cafe just outside the club area which is right on the Nile.

A complete day, and night, of moving and shaking! 

 I feel alive!