Written by Menna Tarek Khalil.
Once upon a time I came to live in Egypt when I turned 9. I kept convincing myself that Egypt is “Om el Donya” and my home country where I should live and die! But what happened to me on Tuesday 12/2/2013 at L’Aubergine (Heliopolis branch) is unacceptable!!!
I’m Menna Khalil. I was born in Kuwait and was raised with expats. So. I got used to accept differences. Then, came to live in Egypt when I was turning 9. I’m 27 with double major in English Literature and Fine Arts (painting). I work as a FreeLancer Trainer (Business English and Soft Skills). Moreover, I’m a Jewelry and Fashion designer now. Being veiled never stopped me from enjoying life to the maximum. I’ve friends from all over the world with different backgrounds, ideologies and preferences. I’m an advanced diver and I’m crazy about traveling and learning new languages.
I had a birthday party in L’Aubergine Restaurant & Bar at 9:30. I was rushing to catch it. At the door the man (bouncer), who doesn’t know A,B,C how to deal with people, said: “VEILED WOMEN AREN’T ALLOWED TO ENTER”
Me: “EXCUSE ME!!!!!!” (I called my friend Karim and I asked him to come out and I asked the man to get me his manager. The manager comes (wearing casual and looks like BALTAGY (in other words no relation to what a MANAGER to a restaurant or a bar should look like, no offense to BALTAGEYA)
Me: “ARE YOU THE MANAGER?” (In SHOCK!!)
Manager: “AIWA ANA el manager!”
Me: “How come the bouncer tells me I can’t enter?”
Manager: “AHHHHHHH EL MO7AGBEEN MAMNOO3 YED5OLO”
Hala: “but we had an EXCEPTION for two!”
Me:“Excuse me if veiled aren’t allowed to enter. Why did you make an exception for two??”
Manager: “3ashan el 3adad kebeeeeeer.”
Me:“Since you made an exception, why didn’t you inform the people below you that under the name of Karim 2 veiled girls are entering???”
Manager: “………….. (Silence)
Me: “so I stand at the door with the bouncer telling me you can’t enter, till 7ADRETEK MATETLA3 AND SAY YES I CAN ENTER!!!!!”
Me: “THIS IS AN OFFENCE AND I DON’T ACCEPT IT!!! YOU DIDN’T DO YOUR JOB!!!”
3andek 7a2 ana nesseit a2oul, momken ted5ouly”
Me: “I DON’T WANT ANYMORE!!!!!!”
(BARE IN MIND GUYS ALL THIS CONVERSATION WITHOUT THE WORD “SORRY!”)
I said happy birthday to my friend and I went to another place, but I decided to take an ACTION against what happened and I’ll take all the LEGAL procedures against them!!!
L’Aubergine isn’t only discriminating veiled women of their own religion their own country, but discriminating Men according to their Complexion and Race!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Let me add another story to the same scandalous place L’Aubergine. An American friend of mine shared a story that happened to her own Black Sudanese friend!!
Rosita Navarro (American friend posting on Facebook) L’Aubergine also refused service to my Sudanese friend on his birthday after he had already made reservations. They discriminated against him as he showed up late to his own birthday celebration. He tried to lie and claim his reservations didn’t exist even though we were all sitting at his reserved table upstairs, then they claimed they only allowed couples in, so I went downstairs to get him so it would be a ‘couple’ then they kept giving him and our other Sudanese friend nasty looks and comments until we finally got up and left. They were disgustingly racist and I would never step another foot in that place.
What do you think people of our community and famous places like l’Aubergine or other places who wants to embody the Western lifestyle, but don’t want to embrace the freedom of religion or how you express it!
Is Freedom allowing girls nearly topless to enter, but decent Veiled girls not to in an Islamic Arabic Country!!!!!!!
I can’t believe those places and this mentality which are sick with double standards!! I can’t believe that I am ACCEPTED as being veiled out of Egypt and here people don’t!
No door selection has ever happened to me out of Egypt in Fancy restaurants, pubs or clubs though I’m different I’m more covered and I don’t drink but no one give me a look. Here in Egypt I think someone will lose his appetite if he saw a veiled woman eating on another table!!!!
Why are Women classified into Veiled or Non-Veiled, White or Black, Muslim or Christian? What is wrong happening with the rotten way of thinking and perceiving what is right and what is wrong?????
Places in my country made us STRANGERS who can’t fit in!!! Made veiled girls like Mutants in the Classy World!!!
They can’t accept us! Either we transform and change or disappear from their world!