Nearby, demonstrators used stones, once used to repel pro-Mubarak supporters, to spell out slogans on the ground.
The command “Leave!” in Arabic spelled covered a few square feet of the square. The latest addition: “70 Billion” — the Mubarak family’s rumored wealth.
Vendors sold dates, plastic cups of hot tea, socks — three pairs for $2 — sesame-seed snacks, potato chips and juice. Young men and women gathered in circles, debating the day’s events. Before Jan. 25, Egyptians would not have dreamed of discussing politics so openly.
“We are learning a culture of respectful disagreement here,” said Nashat Cross, 28, a Christian who works as a translator. “The level of cultured discussion is something I really admire.”
From time to time, somebody in the crowd would begin chanting anti-Mubarak slogans, and hundreds of others joined in, clapping.
Men sometimes bellydanced on the side to the rhythm of the chants.
Another procession of men stood at the exit, waving the red-white-and-black Egyptian flag, banging drums, blowing on harmonicas and singing, again, like an Egyptian wedding procession.
“You’ll come back, wont you?” they chanted. “You’ll come back to liberate us!”
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