Sitting in an open Land Rover, the New York lawyer in front of me surveys the scene. Thirty feet away, three lions are gorging on a warthog. Jackals and hyenas skulk among nearby trees. Vultures circle overhead. “I didn’t need to come to Africa for this,” he says brusquely. “It’s like a regular day at the office.”
The biggest names in the Middle East sporting community will gather for the Sports Industry Awards as the event returns for its eighth edition. SPIA recognizes the achievements of individuals, organizations, facilities and campaigns that contributed to the development of sport in the region.
At the restaurant, a woman in our group asks to be seated in the no-smoking section. The proprietor points to a chair nailed to the ceiling. Welcome to Cairo, where everything is just a little twisted. When you visit Egypt’s capital and Africa’s largest city, you soon realize that you are not in Kansas anymore — not by a long shot. Cairo is a shrug, a wink, a tongue in the cheek. This city of 16 million gets right up in your face — but always with a benevolent if desert-dry sense of humor.