Egypt Tomonkai

About the Egypt Tomonkai

The Egypt Tomonkai was restarted on February 12, 2015 after some years of suspension. Currently, the number of members is around 40. As can be seen in any Waseda alumni groups, our members are playing active roles in various fields including embassies, governmental organizations, the media, trading houses, financial institutions, and archeological research institutions. We are holding events every two to three months. Each time, we have a great time and enjoy deepening our friendships, regardless of the differences in age and profession. We are also enjoying our rivalry with the Egypt Mita-kai, who are forever our great rival and friends. In Keio-Waseda Golf Competitions, we have been winning so far with a huge margin. Although we are always serious when it comes to competitions, at the gatherings, we always sing the school song of both schools and exchange yells.

Partly because of the political disturbances in 2011 and 2013, the number of Japanese citizens living in Egypt is not too large at around 1,000; however, I am sure that the number of members of the Egypt Tomonkai will increase in the near future with the addition of new energetic Waseda alumni as our members.
Jun Fujiwara (Graduated in 2009, School of Commerce)


At a Keio-Waseda Golf Competition

The attractive points of Egypt

Egypt is located about 10,000 kilometers away from Japan, which has been giving somewhat bad impression as a dangerous place after the Arab Spring that started in 2010. However, if you start living here, you will learn that there are various characteristics in Egypt, and surprisingly, we find that the country is closer to Japan in various aspects than one might expect.

There are many excellent golf courses with natural grass and diving spots whose water is said to be the most transparent in the world. In addition, although Egyptians are mostly Muslims, they produce beers and wines within their country, and thus are generous enough to seek to live together in mutual prosperity with other countries and cultures. Therefore, we foreigners almost never feel uncomfortable in our daily lives.

At the workplace, I sometimes feel frustrated at the Egyptians who do not readily keep promises, tend to be extremely careless with work, and are often already back home when I become aware of their absence (even when the work is not done at all). However, it is also true that their jokes, friendliness, and charm often help me, and these attributes of Egyptians are some of the attractive points of this country. Egypt, the largest country in the Arab world, is surprisingly both “far away and close”.
Jun Fujiwara (Graduated in 2009, School of Commerce)


A diving spot whose water is very transparent

Message from the Chairman

Egypt is one of the three largest civilizations and is a large country with a very long history. It is also geopolitically extremely important. There, things that do not change and that continue to change coexist with perfect balance. The things that do not change include the Nile River, the longest river in the world which gives blessings to the people living around it; the many ruins there including the pyramids; strong sunshine and massive clouds of dust observed throughout the year; honks that are sounded throughout the day and night in towns; and the enthusiasm of the people there. The things that change include the political and legal system of the law-governed state; its political, economic, and diplomatic policies; and the strength of the Coffee of the Day at Starbucks (it changes drastically every day!).

Things that change and do not change differ significantly from those in Japan. As such, we often feel at a loss or frustrated as we lead our lives here. However, the Egypt Tomonkai is a place where we can feel safe and comfortable just because the members are alumni of Waseda. I would like to thank the existence of the Tomonkai and the cooperation from its members, and hope to do more to make it an oasis for Waseda alumni living in Egypt.
Takayoshi Okubo (Graduated in 1985, Graduate School of Engineering)


A gathering with the previous President Katsuhiko Shirai

Messages from the Members

What surprised me living in Cairo are its lovely climate and how strong people believe in Islam. It is sunny here almost every day and is a heavenly place for Japanese who are always troubled by the rainy season and typhoons. And as the Nile River is rich in water, I immediately knew why the oldest civilization flourished here. It is extremely hot in summer; however, is a comfortable place to live throughout the year. And I found out that the people are truly religious, just by seeing them spreading a small rug on the side of the street and praying all alone, whether or not people are watching them. I think it is because of the climate and the religion that Egyptians are very cheerful and friendly.

The gatherings at the Tomonkai get rid of all of the stress that we have, as it is a place where we can have a pleasant chat as if we were still students, regardless of our age and our beliefs. The Tomonkai is truly the heaven for us.
Masayoshi Suzuki (Graduated in 1971, School of Commerce)

Smelly, dirty, unworthy of respect…. These are the impressions I have about Egypt after coming here on business in August 2015 and staying here for about a year. The good thing about Egypt is that fruits are rather cheap. There were terrorist attacks by the IS (Islamic State), plane crushes, and abductions of foreigners. There are no signs of improvement in the security situation here, and its tourism industry has remained sluggish.

At the Egypt Tomonkai, we can share such daily hardships. If you ever wish to come to Egypt, all of our members at the Egypt Tomonkai will sincerely welcome you! I recommend that you do not expect too much of Egypt, although there are some interesting historic sites such as the pyramids and the Tutankhamen’s tomb.
Toru Uchihashi (Graduated in 2006, School of Political Science and Economics)

More than a year has passed since the school song of Waseda has begun to be heard at times in Egypt. Every time I participate in the gatherings of the Tomonkai which are always exciting, I feel happy about the fact that many seniors and juniors are actively playing their roles in Egypt; at the same time, I get the feeling of tension and determination that I must also play an active role like others at the Egypt Tomonkai. The Mission of Waseda University says that Waseda shall “stress the building up of character which enables one to … extend one’s influence and activity to the world at large”. As with the student days, at the Egypt Tomonkai we meet and part. I think the time we can spend with those who embody the ideals of Waseda is very precious.
Teiichiro Nakamura(Graduated in 1999, School of Humanities and Social Sciences)

I enrolled at Waseda hoping to become an archeologist specializing in Egypt. I came to Egypt for the first time with my friends at the student club at Waseda. There is a saying that “those who have drunk the water of the Nile returns to the Nile”. It is already 20 years after drinking the water of the Nile with determination for my future, and just as the saying goes, I came back to Cairo to live two years ago. It is my background as a Waseda alumna that has provided me with the opportunities to excavate at the foot of the pyramids. I am grateful for the Egypt Tomonkai where I found friends with whom I can share the beauty of the harmony of the yellow sand of Egypt, the blue sky, and the crimson school flag.
Akiko Nishisaka (Graduated in 2006, Graduate School of Letters, Arts and Sciences (PhD))


A pyramid which is a World Heritage site

List of Overseas Branches/
Overseas Tomonkai/
Overseas Tomonkai
Japanese Branches

Overseas Branches
Alumni Association in China / Alumni Association in Korea / Alumni Association in Taiwan
Overseas Tomonkai
Asia
Bangalore Tomonkai / Bangkok Tomonkai / Beijing Tomonkai / Cambodia Tomonkai /
Dalian Tomonkai / Hanoi Tomonkai / Hong Kong Tomonkai / India Tomonkai /
Jakarta Tomonkai / Kanan (South China) Tomonkai / Malaysia Tomonkai / Manila Tomonkai / Mumbai Tomonkai / Myanmar Tomonkai / Saigon Tomonkai / Seoul Tomonkai / Shanghai Tomonkai / Singapore Tomonkai / Suzhou Tomonkai / Taipei Tomonkai / Ulan Bator Tomonkai
Oceania
Brisbane Tomonkai / Melbourne Tomonkai / Perth Tomonkai / Sydney Tomonkai
North America
Boston Tomonkai / Chicago Tomonkai / Georgia Tomonkai / Hawaii Tomonkai / Los Angeles Tomonkai / Michigan Tomonkai / New York Tomonkai / San Francisco Tomonkai / Seattle Tomonkai / Toronto Tomonkai / Vancouver Tomonkai / Greater Washington Tomonkai
Central and South America
Brazil Tomonkai / Chile Tomonkai / Lima Tomonkai / Mexico Tomonkai
Europe
Belgium Tomonkai / Berlin Tomonkai / Denmark Tomonkai / Dusseldorf Tomonkai /
Frankfurt Tomonkai / Geneva Tomonkai / Moscow Tomonkai / Netherlands Tomonkai / Paris Tomonkai / Stockholm Tomonkai / UK Tomonkai
Middle East
Abu Dhabi Tomonkai / Qatar Tomonkai / Tehran Tomonkai
Africa
Egypt Tomonkai / Johannesburg Tomonkai / Kenya Tomonkai
Overseas Tomonkai Japanese Branches
Bangkok Tomonkai Japanese Branch / Beijing Tomonkai Tokyo Branch / Dusseldorf Tomonkai Tokyo Branch / Gaoxiong Tomonkai Alumni Association / Hanoi Tomonkai Japanese Branch / Jakarta Tomonkai Alumni Association / Los Angeles Tomonkai Japan / New York Tomonkai Tokyo Branch /
Paris Tomonkai Tokyo Branch / Saigon Tomonkai Japanese Branch / Shanghai Tomonkai Tokyo Branch / Singapore Tomonkai Japanese Branch / Tokyo Brazil Tomonkai / Tokyo Hong Kong Tomonkai / Tokyo Melbourne Tomonkai / UK Tomonkai Tokyo Branch