BRENTWOOD—Former Los Angeles resident Eden Unger Bowditch has embarked over the past decade on an experience that many only imagine. Egypt’s historic revolution transformed author Bowditch from a settled American ex-patriot into a war refugee, lucky to escape her home in Cairo with her three young children.
Americans have been hearing stories dispatched from Egypt by CNN, CBS, FOX, ABC and NBC over the past several months about Egypt’s revolution from talking heads, biased journalists and government officials, who have to put politics before the truth very often. On Thursday, June 23, residents can hear for themselves a more personal point of view; that of a civilian caught up, unexpectedly, in a historic revolution.
Author Eden Unger Bowditch
Although raised in California, the author has lived in Cairo with her family since 2006. Her life before the revolution was one that every American mother would recognize, with one major difference: “I never felt worried for my family’s safety,” Eden says. “Not like in every city in America.”
But all of that changed on the Day of Revolt this past January, when homegrown militias and the sounds of gunfire shook Cairo. As Eden fought to protect her sons, Cyrus and Julius, the government stopped all internet and cell phone access, leaving her cut off from her daughter. Twelve-year-old Lyric had traveled to Abu Dhabi for a meeting of young activists and was desperate for word of her family’s safety. It took days, each one with its own challenges, to get Lyric on a flight back to her family.
As if her family’s stress level was not high enough, after the their car was stolen by government-sanctioned thugs, Eden feared her family was trapped in the city. As more and more Americans fled the country, the Bowditches were one of the few families remaining. Finally, the family persuaded the American Embassy to include them in their evacuation efforts, and they fled the country on a plane to Germany.
“What comes next is not clear,” Eden says. But as some semblance of normalcy returns to Cairo, the family has made their way back home. This summer, Eden will tour the United States with her first children’s book titled “The Atomic Weight of Secrets,” a promising novel which was being discussed with film producers in America while Eden and her family were evacuating Egypt. On Thursday, she will appear at Diesel Bookstore in Brentwood for the book’s official launch party.
Of her family’s continued life in Cairo, Eden concludes, “Things changed when the revolution came. They changed in wonderful ways and ways that made everything uncertain.”
Go to DieselBookstore.com and click on "Brentwood store" for more information about the upcoming event.