Eihab Boraie ventures to New Cairo's Downtown Mall to check out Super Stash - a hobbyists heaven filled with comic books, classic vinyls and every quirky collectible in between.
Life continues to pass us by, as time control remains restricted to realms of science fiction. Before you know it, you are old, and if you’re lucky you will have something to show for your time on earth. This is why hobbies and collections are important tools for a satisfied life because, as it passes, your collections grow, and thus a part of priceless history you amassed lives long after your vessel expires. But making memories through the passionate purchases is difficult in Egypt. Luckily, Super Stash – a new boutique hobby store in Downtown Mall – is changing that.
What gave my life meaning was the hunt for vinyls. I wanted to leave behind a massive vinyl collection that spans all genres and movements in musical space and time. In Canada, I managed to fill my library with close to 400 records before deciding to move to Egypt. The hardest day of my life was realising that I couldn’t afford to ship them with me. I felt defeated and lost as time began passing while my collection remains stagnating and out of reach.
My growing despair had me in a funk, feeling hopeless until this past weekend when I was meandering around New Cairo’s Downtown Mall and stumbled upon salvation at Super Stash. Walking through the doors felt like I was entering a collector’s heaven. On my right walls adorned with stacks of legendary graphic novels and single issues comic books. In front of me a mystical landscape filled with colourfully painted Warhammer characters, and on my left, boxes labelled by genres filled with vinyl. Instantly I made my way to the records and started crate digging for gold. In the hunt I found a diverse array of sounds ranging from Daft Punk and the Arctic monkeys to essential Hendrix and The Doors’ albums. I want to grab them all, but sadly my turn tables were unable to make the move to Egypt and I was record player-less. Noticing my discontent I was approached by the owner, Mahmoud Maktad, who informed me that “Super Stash will be offering a catalogue that will allow customers to purchase custom designed professional turntables from us.”
It seemed to me that Maktad, a collector himself, had thought of everything a hobbyist would need when putting together the place. We talked for quite a bit about our passions, the state of vinyl and graphic novels collecting in Egypt, and how a place like Super Stash is needed if a community would emerge. What surprised me the most is that although I happened to be at their opening, Maktad wasn’t shy to positively mention his competitors, realising that without supporting each other there could be no chance of forming a community. “There are only two places to buy comic books, Super Stash and Kryptonite. We particularly focus on single issues that come out every month and appreciate in value with time.”
I ended up spending over an hour going through the vinyl, comics and variety of miscellaneous collector items that I never imagined I would find in Egypt. It was becoming very clear that I would be spending a lot of money here, but unprepared all I could only afford at the time was a Star Wars omnibus graphic novel and a Futurama key chain. I left feeling inspired by the fact that, despite Egypt’s problems, life was getting better. I was finding all the things I missed and loved abroad and was beginning to find my hunger for collectibles again. The prices at first seem expensive, but in actuality are very relative to the prices abroad. At end of the day, the price shouldn’t matter as many of pieces are investments and, if properly maintained, can endlessly increase in value with time. They act much like stocks except that you actually have something physical that you care about to hold in your hands. So if you are looking to find a new passion or continuing to grow your existing stash, we highly recommend starting your hunt at the Super Stash.
Find out more about Super Stash on their Facebook page here.