الحداية ما ترميش كتاكيت
El heddaya ma termeesh katakeet
Translation: A kite is not going to let a chick (that it caught) fall to the ground
Meaning: Don’t expect favours from mean people. This proverb compares them to kites and other predatory birds who only take and never give back. There are no more kites in the skies of overpopulated Cairo, but well into the 1950s it was common for kites to grab food and chicks from people’s yards.
Source: Egyptian Proverbs, (Al-Ahram Center for Translation and Publishing, 1986) by Ahmed Taymour Pasha
Translated by: Nabil Shawkat