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Culture Shock in Egypt

Heroes Remember

Culture Shock in Egypt

It was definitely a culture shock when we got there. First of all, the temperature was extremely hot and we're not used to that, you know, here, and the way that people live also. We see, you know, houses here but over there, mainly they live in houses they built in mud. That's what it is and a lot of houses we noticed there was no roof on the house, so what do they do during the rain? Well, we find out during the rain, it doesn't rain over there so very simple. The ten or six months we were there, one night we had some rain. It rained about two hours and that's it. We were playing outside in the rain. The Egyptians thought we were crazy. We wanted rain so. But yeah, it was... And my job over there, I was employed in the operation side so basically, the Egyptians had bridges across the Nile, the river and they really controlled the bridges. And our job was to contact them and ask them, when the bridge would be on so convoy could go, like to get material, like all the stuff came in, a lot of stuff came in Israel for some reason. I don't know why, but you could land it in Cairo but they didn't, they landed in Israel and we had military convoy going to Israel to get that equipment, bring it over to us but we had to find out exactly when the bridge were up and they were very unpredictable. Bridge, let's say they will open from eleven in the morning to two in the afternoon, but if at twelve o'clock they felt that, that's it, we close the bridge, the bridges were closed and opened the next day, but we had a convoy on the other side, so those guys had nowhere to go, you know.

Mr. Desmeules describes the culture shock when arriving in Egypt and his duties with the operational side.

Mike Desmeules

Mr. Desmeules was born in 1950 in Jean Pierre, Quebec. With little work in his hometown community, Mr. Desmeules decided to join the armed forces, considering it as an opportunity to travel. At 18 years of age Mr. Desmeules initially joined the Navy taking up the service occupation of administrative clerk. With this occupation being very generic to all branches of service, Mr. Desmeules later joined with the army and in 1975 accepted an opportunity to travel to Egypt with the Signal Regiment. In 1995, Mr. Desmeules accepted a posting to Rwanda, again in the administrative field of occupation. Upon return to Canada, Mr. Desmeules made the switch back to navy service and retired when 30 years of service was achieved. Mr. Desmeules and his family took up residence in Prince Edward Island, Canada.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
Person Interviewed:
Mike Desmeules
War, Conflict or Mission:
Canadian Armed Forces
Royal Canadian Signals Corps

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