Friday, April 11, 2014
Sunday, March 30, 2014
Unfortunately, someone decided that the hole in the road was the perfect place to dump their rubbish... So now we don't just have a hole in the road... WE HAVE A FREAKING EYESORE!
To whichever neighbour of mine did this... I wish you all the best.... grrrrr.....
Monday, March 24, 2014
|This is a magnolia blossom... imagine a tree covered with such immense blooms. |
The newspapers give you an idea of the size.
Thursday, March 06, 2014
I'm really starting to hate driving lately. The rain that we've been having lately has made the roads a mess. And the drivers are getting crazier too. There are days when I leave the house in the morning that I wonder if I'll make it home.
This a picture of part of the road that's washed away on the dirt road near my house. On another road nearby is a sinkhole large enough to fit about 4 cars.
I'd post more pictures, but I'm afraid to take my hands off the steering wheel!
It's not just the roads that are a bit bumpy here these days.... life in general is a bit bumpy. .. I'll post an update soon.
Wednesday, February 05, 2014
Hope kindle and rebound you.
May your Hurts turn to Healing;
Your Heart embrace Feeling.
May Wounds become Wisdom;
Every Kindness a Prism.
May Laughter infect you;
Your Passion resurrect you.
May Goodness inspire
your Deepest Desires.
Through all that you Reach For,
May your arms Never Tire.”
― D. Simone
Saturday, January 11, 2014
Sunday, December 29, 2013
My single post for January was about the weather... as usual it was a rainy January and I spent quite a bit of time in the car, traversing on very bad roads.
The month began with a post about a historical landmark near Tarhouna. Later on in the month I posted about a childhood remembrance. There was Libyan Revolution Day to get happy about, and fun times with my son Ibrahim. We waited for Nora's exam results to come out while we devised plans to scare off marriage proposals.
An anniversary this month - 24 years in Libya which is nearly half my life! I enjoyed springtime in my garden and tried (in vain) to buy the most exquisite lamp I had yet to see in Libya.
A big milestone for my daughter Sara - braces! After some dust storms that were so bad they closed down the airport I spent time cleaning up in my garden.
We went hiking in the mountains on a dusty day, but still had a good time anyway. There was some drama with my in-laws that turned out not to be very dramatic after all (thank God!). And I requested some ideas to get me through writers block.
We had some foggy mornings and my husband built some bird-feeders for the garden. I wrote a small poem called 'The Libyan Waiting Room' and started my annual stocking up for Ramadan. We had a morning picnic at the seaside with a good friend. I wrote a 5 minute adventure story and reported on life's annoyances in Libya (drones and houseflies).
Ramadan preparations are well underway at the beginning of the month. The Minister of Electricity announced that there would be no power cuts during Ramadan - he didn't mention which year though because we had power cuts nearly every day. It was hot, usually over 40C and we suffered our way through the month. There were assassinations of activists in Benghazi and unrest in the country and even close by - right down our dirt road.
The Heath Minister announced that "Libyan hospitals were not fit for human beings" and said a contract was awarded to a British company to try to remedy the situation. I posted a list of things I had written in the past about my hospital experiences in Libya. I had a guest post regarding the rights of foreign wives of Libyans (we hope there will be changes made soon). Ramadan ended, we had a quiet Eid and then it was time to get back on some sort of schedule. The new school year was about to start and I reported on a project to build portable classrooms in Libya. It was time to plan my trip to Florida to visit my family there - I was counting the seconds till it was time to leave as the temperatures in Libya got higher and the power cuts got longer.
The power cuts in Libya continued (seems to be the theme this year) and to top that off the water supply to the capital was cut off, but I was on holiday - far away in Florida. I had spent a few days in the UK on my way to the United States. Unfortunately I had the flu and so didn't really get to enjoy my visit to Cambridge as much as I'd have liked, but I was 'home' in Florida recovering.
This month was spent with family and friends. I didn't post much during this month because I was too busy. This is what I was up to: We spent time shopping, picnicking, attending music festivals in the park, and spending time with friends. My mother had good news from her doctor and we decided to take a 5 day cruise to the western Caribbean visiting the Cayman Islands and Cozumel, Mexico. We had a fabulous time and hope to go again in 2014. Here are some pictures that I had planned to post, but never got around to:
|Cambridge when it wasn't raining was really nice.|
|I took this picture while taking a walk on the beach about 5 minutes from my mother's house. I'm going to have the picture printed and framed to put over my desk.|
Back to Libya. I spent time sorting through my house and getting rid of junk. Mid-month, Libyans demonstrated, demanding that the militias leave Tripoli - people were killed in the process and many were injured. The militias pulled back and Libya shut down for a general strike that lasted about 2 weeks.
I posted about how the situation in Libya made posting anything difficult, how unfortunately, the new found freedoms in Libya don't necessarily include the freedom to publish your opinion. And lastly... a post about the gasoline crisis and having an empty tank.
Thursday, December 12, 2013
|The gas indicator light was flashing....|
Friday, December 06, 2013
Friday, November 15, 2013
Wednesday, November 06, 2013
I'm doing a Fall clean out - it's amazing how much 'stuff' accumulates. I've been rearranging furniture and I bought a carload of new plants to replace the ones in the house that had seen better days. The old plants are in rehab, hopefully they will recover.
Yesterday the rains started. The roads are flooded and the kids couldn't get to school this morning. They're enjoying a day off. Maybe I can put them to work... the kitchen cabinets need to be sorted out...
I'll post some pictures from my holiday soon. It was a great 6 weeks!
Wednesday, October 09, 2013
|In the shade of Southern Live Oak trees along the Pinellas Trail.|
Wednesday, September 18, 2013
I'm back 'home' visiting my family and son in Florida for a while. Time to catch my breath and relax for a change, time to spend with family and friends.
The weeks up to my trip were filled with work and gettting things done around the house. We had a small house fire in the bathroom caused by an electrical short in the lighting of the bathroom mirror (most likely the result of a power surge). The damage was mostly from smoke and required a lot of cleaning. My husband cut his foot on broken glass from the mirror when he ran into the bathroom. It could have been a lot worse! We counted our blessings as we cleaned up the mess.
For weeks and weeks there have been power outages all over Tripoli and the surrounding area and to top that off the water in the capitol was cut off. Thankfully, we have well water at my house, but it caused a huge amount of problems for many people. The water came back on two days after I left. I hope they get the electricity and water situation sorted out once and for all.
I'm trying not to read the news of what is going on in Libya, but everyday I check at least once. And news doesn't look good! It's very hard to remain optimistic about the situation there. It just might be time to look at other options... but for the moment I'm planning on heading for the beach to watch the sun set. Time to chill out.
Tuesday, September 03, 2013
Friday, August 30, 2013
Saturday, August 24, 2013
Friday, August 16, 2013
|A tent classroom in a refugee camp|
|A school destroyed in the revolution in Zliten, Libya|
|Damage to the University in Misrata from the war. Photo: Reuters|
After the revolution the Ministry of Education did a study of Libyan schools to assess needs and pinpoint problems. They looked at 4,800 schools for their survey and reported that:
- There are about 5 pupils to one teacher (many Libyan females become teachers and are just on the payroll - not actually teaching.)
- Fewer than 1 in 20 schools have provisions for special needs children and there are significant shortages of psychological support and special needs staff - critical as many children are suffering from psychological stress since the revolution.
- A mere fifteen percent of schools have one unisex toilet per 90 students - not always functioning, and fewer than 1% of schools had a functioning toilet for children with disabilities
- Drinking water is often not available, nor is running water of any kind
- One third of the country's schools do not have a system for waste collection - garbage is just left to pile up
- Resources in most schools were found to be substandard, lacking in teaching materials and textbooks
- 40% of schools sustained damage during the revolution and are awaiting repairs
- there is a huge demand for teacher training and development
|These are empty shipping containers that were being used at a checkpoint along the coast road near Garibaldi during the revolution. Last week I saw something similar in Wadi Rabia.|
Sunday, August 11, 2013
Wednesday, August 07, 2013
Friday, August 02, 2013
If you are a foreign wife you need to protect yourself at least a little now by:
- opening a bank account in your name,
- Have a power of attorney for your husband or else his relatives will be the executors of his property not you.
- Know a good lawyer who will be able to help you.
- Set aside savings in your name abroad.
- You must be registered with your embassy.