*The Cairo Sex Diaries was inspired by New York Magazine’s long-standing Sex Diary column.
5.30 am Watching the sunrise over filthy Cairo aboard my short flight to Hurghada. Yes, despite the short distance, I chose a window seat, as I always do whenever I’m travelling. My fiancé, who flew out there ahead of me last night so we don’t risk being seen together at the airport by anyone we might bump into, had booked a romantic getaway for the both of us in a high-end resort. Hurghada’s also more low profile than say, Gouna, again, so we don’t run into anyone we might know. But instead of being excited about the prospect of a long weekend on the beach, my anxiety and jitters almost make me nauseous. I love him, and I’m 100% myself around him, and I want to love him in body and soul and give all that is me to him—only, all of that last part has yet to happen.
We planned this weekend to do the deed ahead of our wedding, without any of the social pressures that come with sleeping together on the wedding day. Also, honestly, neither of us could wait any longer. We’ve already been dating for two years, engaged for ten months of those, and the most we have ever done is brief genital stroking and long kisses for the mere minutes when we get enough privacy. Sometimes when I’m around him, in a random instance of him sitting close to me or gazing at me lovingly as he often does or wrapping his arms around me, I feel overwhelmed by a throbbing pulse within me and I can’t help but imagine more of him around me and inside of me. I don’t know what would have happened to me if we waited any longer. I know I can trust him, I’m fully myself and comfortable around him; this would be the last “next step” before our marriage, and the guilt or hesitation that might have previously stopped me is now becoming irrelevant. I can share everything with him, and of course, my body too.
6.20 am Landing in Hurghada after long minutes of staring down at the coastline, sandstone mountains, and the clouds. I wonder what it will be like, and how it will feel after. Experimenting with my fingers, and often ending up feeling really, really good, I am sure is no measure of being with someone else, someone I love. But will he enjoy it? Would I? How will I measure up to the other couple of girls he’s slept with before? Will it hurt? Will I bleed? Will it be such a huge mess that neither of us enjoy anything? I heard the bleeding thing is a total taboo but when push comes to shove, I’m not sure what would really happen. Will he treat me differently after, despite how “open-minded” he claims to be? I doubt it, but I can’t help but sometimes think he might. These and a million other thoughts mar my usually clear mind, clouded by a strange mix of guilt, fear and excitement.
We’ve already been dating for two years, engaged for ten months of those, and the most we have ever done is brief genital stroking and long kisses for the mere minutes when we get enough privacy.
7:05 am Hany, my fiancé, approaches me at baggage collection and, almost in celebration of our special weekend ahead, greets me by softly kissing my lips as opposed to the usual cheek he aims for when we’re in Cairo. The butterflies in my stomach amplify. As if he could feel it, he wraps his arms around me tightly and whispers, almost to comfort me, “Ba7ibek awy, habibtee.”
8.30 am - 9.00 am Sipping coffee on the balcony of Hany’s beachfront room, after throwing my own luggage down in my room. Fortunately, we managed to get rooms on the same floor that aren’t too far from each other. Fuck this seriously, why do I have to sneak around like a teenager just to spend some time with the man I love?
He approaches me, kissing my forehead, running his fingers through my hair, and staring at me that way, the way that makes me melt. “I think I’m a bit sweaty,” I mutter.
“No, you smell lovely actually,” he whispers, turning to face and full-on kiss me. It’s been a while, and now it feels warm, sweet, loving. He stares into my eyes after, holds my sweaty hands tight, and smiles silently.
I clear my throat before I finally weakly mouth, “I have to tell you something.”
“Yes, my love, anything,” he urges.
“I’m terrified, like really terrified.”
“Leih habibtee, I thought you wanted this?”
After a long pause, I finally breathe, “I don’t know…” Now that the wedding is so close, it meant something—finally—to sleep with a man I knew I would spend the rest of my life with. But still, fear held me back.
“What is it? It’s fine. Tell me…”
“I guess…I don’t know…I wanted it, I really did…but I’m hesitant.”
He kisses my forehead and coaxes, “We have all the time in the world. It’s fine…”
I wonder if he’s frustrated, or just saying that because he wants to make me feel better. That’s probably a messed-up thing to think, but wouldn’t anyone be frustrated by making all these arrangements to get laid and then not getting it? Even if the other person was the love of their life?
10:00 am We curl into his bed after breakfast, spooning as we sometimes do when we’re away with friends in Sokhna or other rare occasions we have to lie down together. Each time, it feels like the most comforting thing I have ever experienced. I sent him a Rumi quote once explaining this, beautifully stating how travelers on a caravan might sleep peacefully when they know they are safe, but feel far more tense when they feel they might be attacked. “That explains why you always fall asleep first,” he joked at the time, even though “always” was only maybe five times.
Fortunately, we managed to get rooms on the same floor that aren’t too far from each other. Fuck this seriously, why do I have to sneak around like a teenager just to spend some time with the man I love?
2:30 - 5:30 pm We lie in his bed again after an afternoon swim, still in our bathing suits. At some point, I doze off, and I wake up to see he’s slept too. I bring myself closer to his chest, listening to his heartbeat and holding his firm arms, shaped by hours of rigorous exercise. “Ba7ibak,” I mutter almost unintentionally. Almost as if to encourage and affirm he could hear, his faint smile grows wider. I would certainly bend over backwards to see, smell, and feel that every day.
8:30 pm - 9:00 pm After dinner at the hotel’s Italian restaurant, we head to my room and a steamy make-out session on the couch ensues. He strokes my breasts gently over my shirt, before moving his hand back to hold my back. “I’ve missed you,” he says. “So much.” I jolt off the couch as I feel the rush of passionate longing before I mutter, “Let’s sit out on the balcony…”
He kisses my forehead while I make coffee at the minibar, before I lie in my usual, comfortable seat overseeing the view. I feel him staring at me, as if to say, aren’t you going to tell me what’s on your mind? But I say nothing. Instead, I close my eyes and meditate, feigning a sudden in interest to indulge in the pleasant weather.
What do you really want? What’s stopping you? Didn’t you want him all along? What’s the point of all this if you don’t end up sleeping together? He loves you, and you him, why should anything stop you from expressing that… A long string of thoughts interrupt any attempt at quieting my mind, and in the end I decide, screw everything, I am doing it. All that matters is I am his, and he mine, and sex will only improve our relationship. Anything on my mind that indicates otherwise is conditioning, taboo… He will still love me after, maybe even more than he did before.
I tell him I’ll head to my room for a few minutes, where I grab a lingerie shopping bag from a mall trip earlier in the week. He pecks me once I return, pouring juice for us as I stand in the walk-in closet out of his sight. While I can feel him watching the room’s spacious hall, probably cursing the day he fell in love with a girl who would waste his entire weekend like this, I slip into the bright red baby doll dress I had earlier purchased and sneak a look at myself in a small mirror. Yup, I look pretty damn hot.
As our eyes meet while I walk in his direction. I laugh because it’s all a little awkward, this whole lingerie-seduction thing. He smiles. I tell him, “habibi, I love you. And I want you, so, so much.” He comes in, throws me onto the couch, and we begin kissing again.
9:15 pm - 10:00 pm Hany slowly runs his fingers and tongue all over my body, pausing intermittently to peck the insides of my thighs, my lower belly, and my breasts. I moan uncontrollably…God, it feels phenomenal...
“Wait!” I scream as I begin to tear up.
“What is it?’ He pauses.
Catching my breath, I plead, “Go slower…”
He lies down next to me, running his fingers through my hair, eyeing me in that passionate way I simply can’t handle. “Are you sure….Or actually…let’s try something…” He seems to be voicing this more to himself than to me, and after staring at me for a few moments, he hops off the bed. I hear his footsteps behind me, but I can’t be bothered to sit up. My body feels too heavy and light at once, even the simplest move seems to be too much exertion, and I’m too overwhelmed and dizzy to try anyway.
Will he treat me differently after, despite how “open-minded” he claims to be? I doubt it, but I can’t help but sometimes think he might. These and a million other thoughts mar my usually clear mind, clouded by a strange mix of guilt, fear and excitement.
I hear him pouring drinks, and he walks back to me as he hands me a glass. “Habibtee, sit up, have some wine if you’d like…” He lifts me up and supports my back with a couple of cushions, as I force myself to hold the glass. I don’t drink very often, but red wine is my drink of choice. I take a few sips, my body heating down with the movement of my wrists.
“Rohi, you keep closing your legs,” he sighs, “I can’t do anything you unless you let go.”
Do I? I mutter to myself between sips. Before my mind begins to wander, he begins kissing me again, and I set the glass aside. Being with Hany is the safest I felt with anyone…not to mention, he is so sexy. Watching him, ripped as fuck, wearing nothing but his boxers and passionately focusing on just me, is something more intense than my wildest fantasy.
10:20 pm - 11:20 pm After a second glass, he begins kissing me again, and mind-blowing foreplay ensues. Damn, his tongue does wonders in so many places other than in my mouth. As our eyes meet while he licks me there, I could swear my heart almost stops beating. Coitus hurts a little, more than a little, and I bleed. But I don’t mind the pain. If he’s happy I’m happy, and at least we got this out of the way so I can actually enjoy the wedding night.
9:00 am - 9:45 am Breakfast at the restaurant downstairs. We touch more than often, he runs his fingers through my hair and we hold hands, touch each other’s legs. It’s like sex made us more comfortable, made our love more raw.
10.30 am -10:45 am Phone calls to my mom, my brother and my best friend. The first two are exceptionally curt, and by the third phone call, I don’t talk much even though I wouldn’t have minded gushing a few details. “Yes babe, all’s pretty good…I’m really happy…” I know she can almost hear my clam, pleasurable state, but I don’t reveal a lot.
2:00 pm - 5:00 pm Lazying by the pool with my one and only. I try to read a book, but instead we stare at each other, chat about our hopes, dreams and anxieties. Sexually, I still want so much more…I am a little bit scared, still, of what’s to come, but I want to give him all of me and lose myself in him…
I don’t want to go home. And I definitely can’t wait until the wedding fuss is over in a couple of months; then, we can actually live together day in, day out.