Trying to travel and being held back for reasons I cannot exactly control I cannot help but think of the past. Not my own past, I mean way back in the past. 100 years ago? Maybe 1000 years ago? Egyptians used to travel if they wish.
Call me stupid for thinking of that about the Egyptian past, but I couldn’t resist thought when Will Peach said it jokingly “Ramses II didn’t require a visa to travel!” He’s so damn right about it! Back then, and maybe until just 100 years ago, Egyptians were welcomed everywhere in the world. We didn’t flee the country as illegal immigrants to go work as under paid labor in Europe and the States. As a matter of fact, we had British labor in Egypt until that time!
What happened? A couple of thousand years ago, if Ramses II wanted to go somewhere, he’d go. Did he need permission? I guess not! He didn’t have the big green passport of Egypt that made it even harder to travel! Fast forward to the middle ages when people – not very officially – required a paper or a note from the ruler or king to go to another country, if I had just had the adventurous spirit like Ibn Battuta and went traveling, no one would have stopped me!
Fast forward to the 1950s and up to the 70s, people did require a visa to travel, but how many actually got rejected? I’d say till the early 1980s it was the golden ages for Egyptians to travel. Whoever applied for a visa did get it and went wherever they wanted.
Back at those times, when the United Arab Emirates was still a country to be, they asked Egyptian engineers to plan the country for them. Now Egyptians need visa to go to Emirates, and to work there? Extreme qualifications making it almost impossible to get a job there unless you have someone working there that would put in a good word for you!
Fast forward a few more years, during my life time, it is not that easy anymore! I have been rejected from a United States tourist visa twice. Now I’m planning to study in the UK and the amount of documents required, the amount of money required – and it has to be proven that it is mine, not borrowed – is wild! Even though I am accepted by the university, and paid the first installment of the fees, I still have a 50% chance to get rejected.
I wish I had lived in an earlier time. A time when I didn’t have to prove that there are ties between me and my home land in order to be allowed to get a visa to visit my family that is living abroad, a time when I didn’t need to prove that my bank account holds 50 months worth of my salary just to be able to study abroad…
Anyway, I am not going anywhere with this, I just had to put a few random thoughts I had. Maybe I am just too worried I’ll be rejected from the UK visa. Do wish me luck 🙂