It was a defining day in the history of - dare I say - the entire Middle East. Yes, Tunisia preceded us and taught us what it meant to revolt. Yes, they did open that door. Yet it was the 28th of January that truly broke down a wall that people once thought to be a mountain.
I remember the day very well. I remember the haziness of the air. I remember the hint of tear gas that seemed to be sprinkled around every breath I took.
I remember how unbelievable the events were. It felt like a dream, yet you knew you were awake and that things could have gotten uglier at any moment.
I remember the protests that marched throughout the city as though the people finally owned it. I remember the police gear that some protesters carried while marching, as though they were carrying prizes of war.
The sight of a people who had previously been prevented from speaking their mind in the public arena marching freely and calling for the collapse of a regime that had them silenced for decades; it was a sight that instilled hope in the hearts of many.
It was the day the security apparatus of the old system fell. It was the day people took back the freedom of speech that was rightfully theirs. Gone were the days of fear of imprisonment for speaking one's mind. Gone were the days of looking over one's shoulder if one spoken against the system. Gone were the days of political imprisonment.
Or at least they were gone then.
What followed the Day of Anger were two weeks of vigilance at night and protests during the day. What followed those weeks was history. And what followed that is a lesson.