Kamal Amin 5 5 February 2012
Greetings to my BIA* Kamal Amin, Architect, Author and fellow Desert Rat:
Dear Kamal, when I read Reflections From the Shining Brow I said to myself, “So this is what we’ve been talking about on those weekend jaunts in the desert.” When your story reached the point in 1977 describing how you started your practice by taking a desk in the office of a mutual friend, this was the beginning of yours and my friendship.
When I read Excursions I said to myself, “So this is what Kamal has been encouraging me to do.” It has since become for me, a reference book and an extension of our friendship. This book was less of a surprise as we talked about it during its creation.
When I read Women of the Nile, I immediately recognized snatches of familiar conversations from our thirty-five year friendship. After spending an hour or so getting to know Golmar, I returned to the first page. I imagined that you and I were seated on a bench in Tahrir Square in Cairo in early December of 2010. The Arab Spring was but a murmur; the Awakening just begun. You were telling me a story of three women and the historical events that defined their lives. And though these women were invented by you I recognized much of their stories.
I chose to read the book aloud. It took less than four hours, lapsing occasionally into silent mode but returning quickly to the spoken word the moment I became aware that my mind was drifting. That happened only twice. This book is written in your conversational style and is very easy to read.
If someone offered me an opportunity to share with them my unique experience with this beautifully written set of stories and the drama of thousands of years of eclectic Egyptian history, I would be inclined to tell them “By all means see the film. But be sure to read Kamal’s written account first.” There will be a film, Kamal. There must be a film.
Thank you my brother,
*Brother In Arms.
Thank you Lee
This is a wonderful letter to receive. You really are a friend in arms.
I was wondering which part you would take in the film. Perhaps you can be Ibrahim Shukry, the man who had the harem,
You probably would like that.