Showing posts from March, 2006

Libyan bloggers

I've come across a few more Libyan bloggers and Libyan related blogs:
Libyano ~~ mindamir ~~ mylibya ~~ libyablog ~~ zizo79 ~~ Yousef and last, but not least ~~ Tripoli Ghibli
I've put them on my sidebar for future reference.

What next in Libya?

Now that the eclipse is over and done with what's the next big event in Libya? The Tripoli International Fair of course! It begins on April 2nd and continues on through until the 12th.

The fair has been an annual event for years. During the years of sanctions when Libya was cut off from the world the Fair was pretty dull. But now that Libya is opened up to the world there will be all kinds of interesting international exhibts and things happening. Luna Angel (image above) is a reggae artist from Oakland, California that will be performing at the fair - you can hear some of her music on her website if you click on the image above. Of course there will be plenty of traditional Libyan musicians at the fair too.

According to the Tripoli International Fair's website there will be 30 countries represented as well as over 2000 companies and organizations - an international, industrial, agricultural and commercial event.

Something to do in April! - I should start charging a fee for prom…

The 'other side' of the eclipse

NASA's Earth Observatory has a report and some interesting pictures of the eclipse over Libya as seen from outer space. The moon's shadow can be seen covering most of the country. Click on the image above to visit the website. They also have high resolution images that you can download. Thanks NASA!

ABC's of life - a meme

Accent ~ American - slightly midwest/slightly southern

Booze of choice ~ nope

Chore I hate ~ more than one but I think laundry is the worst

Dog or Cat ~ there have always been pets in my life but I prefer cats

Essential Electronics ~ computer, camera, microwave oven

Favorite perfume/cologne ~ always seems to change depending on my mood - these days it's either Givenchy's Very Irrisistable or Lancome's Miracle

Gold or Silver ~ either, depends on my mood

Hometown ~ Born in Illinois near Chicago, but then moved to Seminole, Florida at age 12

Insomnia ~ sometimes, but usually I'm so tired by the end of the day I fall into a coma quite quickly

Job Title ~ superwoman

Kids ~ three boys - 7,11,16; three girls - 9,13,15

Living Arrangment ~ family of eight in a sardine-can-sized apartment - hoping to move to someplace bigger if hubby will only just hurry things up a bit . . . sigh . .

Most Admired Trait ~ honesty - can't stand someone who lies

Number of Sexual Partners ~ lol

Overnight Ho…

We've seen the eclipse!

We've seen the eclipse! This is Nora wearing her protective glasses. She made me play with the picture so no one would recognise her.

We went up on the roof and the only other people we saw out were some foreigners on the roof of a nearby embassy. After a while a neighbour man came out on his balcony with only a towel wrapped around his waist - nothing else! The girls and I started giggling and I told them 'Watch that balcony! If he comes out again I'll take his picture.' He didn't come back out.

After a while we went inside so we could see on TV the live report of the total eclipse in the desert. It was awsome!

Countdown to the eclipse

Tomorrow is the day of the eclipse. We'll only see a partial eclipse in Tripoli, we had thought about going to the area where you can witness a total eclipse but:

#1 - the kids are in the middle of exams

#2 - it's a long drive out there

#3 - if we went we would have to leave someone home with the kids who are in the middle of exams and no one wants to stay with my kids and honestly, I don't blame them - I don't like staying with them either most of the time.

#4 - there is the whole idea of camping out in a tent - I like the comforts of my own bed and I like plenty of running water. I also know from past experience that there are not very many public bathrooms in Libya and not very many bushes to hide behind in the dessert either. My white butt would be visible for miles.

I know, I know - it's a lot of excuses to miss a maybe once in a lifetime happening. But I'll live!

The kids have the day off from school. Now, in my opinion the schools should be open and teachers s…


A small hillbilly house with lots of satelites . . . vs . . .

Big Libyan houses with lots of satelite dishes . . . hehehehe

more of my boring life . . .

I used to have a wonderful cleaning woman that helped me out around the house. Fatima came two or three times a week and worked up a storm. Unfortunately, she found a full time job and left. I thought it would be a snap to relace her. After trying out others I found that there was no one like Fatima and I finally gave up the search. It was easier just to clean my own house than to constantly have to stand over someone else. I've got a million things to do in my life, I don't think it should be necessary to have to explain how to sweep a floor (I had to do that with one woman every time she came!) - I guess that if these ladies had some smarts they would be doing something besides cleaning people's houses . . sigh . . .

A friend of mine hired a new cleaning woman and said she was pretty good and said she would see if she had any free days. So I informed the kids that a cleaning woman was going to be coming and they better get in their rooms and clean them before she gets he…

A spirit in my bedroom

Last night hubby went off with his friends to a zarda and came home very late smelling of macaroni umbakbaka. I know that many women complain when their husbands go off to zardas, but Mustafa rarely takes part in this form of entertainment and I am extremely happy when he does. It gives me a nice evening to myself for a change. The only drawback is that I have to stay up making sure he gets back. It was late when he got in and I fell into a deep sleep, oblivious to anything.
Around five in the morning Mustafa was awakened by some movement or noise in our bedroom. You know how that is - you're asleep and then get woken up but your not sure if you are really awake or not. He opened his eyes and in the darkness he was sure he was seeing a giant standing by the bed. Squinting his eyes, trying to see. Was he dreaming? Was it a vision? A jinn? -Aoodoobillah! The tallest thing in our house is Adam but this apparition was taller than that!

Poor Mustafa was in that realm between being asleep…

Mother's day - Children's day

This week has two holidays in it that are celebrated in Libya. Mother's day and children's day. Today was children's day and the kids were all excited about going to school. They get dressed up and spend the day running around the school, singing, dancing, eating and also the students are given toys.

Mother's day in my house was pretty boring. I visited my mother-in-law and brought her a gift, but otherwise it was pretty quiet.

If you click on the image above you will find a letter that was written by a Libyan woman about her son who is imprisoned in Guantanamo. The mother who yearns for her son (written by Omar's mother).


So many people want to visit Libya and the major hurdle that they face is obtaining a visa. Today I was poking around the net and reading the news and found an interesting article about a group that is planning a mission of peace and plans to stop in Libya. Their main concern is whether they will get a visa or not. One of the problems they have is that two of the group's members hold Isreali passports and two are American.

" On Tuesday, Fogiel and Galit Oren will attempt to cross the border into Libya 200 kilometers west of here, thus becoming the first people ever allowed into the Arab country on Israeli passports.

They are traveling as part of the Breaking the Ice mission, which has brought together 10 participants from around the globe on a mission of peace, a journey that has taken them through Israel, the Palestinian territories, Jordan and Egypt.

The group of two Israelis, a Palestinian, an Iranian, an Iraqi, an Afghani, two Americans, a Ukrainian, and a Tibetan is crossin…

Are the kids studying for their exams?

There's no TV, no CDs, no games, no radio - but my house is none the less very noisy. It's exam time and the kids are busy doing their best to avoid studying. It is amazing how many diversions they can create for themselves.

At one point this afternoon they decided to play chinese jumprope in the living room. You remember chinese jumprope, don't you? It's the game they play with two kids standing apart holding elastic with their legs while the third kid jumps over the elastic. Of course the one doing the jumping was my daughter who is nearly 16 years old! Apparently she thinks the jumping motion might jiggle and stimulate the part of her brain that will have all the right answers for the exams.

The boys have been running back and forth around the apartment, totally ignoring all my requests that they settle down and open their books. My poor sister-in-law downstairs must think there is a herd of buffalo living above her head.

Don't even think about the kitchen. All thi…

another week nearly over

This week has just flown by. I can't believe that it's already Thursday. Where has the time gone? I think that if there were 48 hours in a day it would still not be enough to accomplish all the tasks that are sitting there waiting for me. In the end I manage to get things done, just takes lots of juggling, shifting and delegating.

The kids have exams next week. If you've read my blog you'll know that I hate exam week. Getting the kids to sit down to study is miserable. I think I get more stressed out and worried about the whole process than they do. I'm completely removing the reciever for the satelite and locking it up. Same goes for the CD player, the power cord for the kid's computer and the playstation. Uuuugghhh! I feel like such a meanie! Still they will manage to find things to do that will waste their time.

Ibrahim had a school field trip yesterday. He was so excited about it and came back exhausted, but with pink cheeks and so happy. He really likes his …
Work is progressing on the house. The tiles are finished in the kitchen and now we need to get the cabinets and countertops designed, made and installed.

Another view of the kitchen with Jenna and Ibrahim. One part of the kitchen will be a work area with the sink below the window. Typical Libyan kitchens have the sink facing the wall - I really hate that. Who wants to look at the wall while they are washing the dishes? The other part of the kitchen will have a seating area.

The verandahs will have this green tile. I have been living for so many years in an apartment upstairs without bars on the windows - living with bars is going to take a while to get used to. You can see the shadow from the bars in this picture.

Aside from the kitchen and the rooms outside the house, the rest of the house will have marble floors. They're almost finished putting in those.

The kids bathroom. Next we'll be working on the plasterwork. Libyan houses have plaster decorative mouldings around the ed…

nothing too exciting . . just everyday life

The weather has been wonderful. This afternoon I walked up to the shops with Jenna and we had a nice time looking around at all the shops. Jenna bought a pair of bright orange sneakers. Somehow, I think bright orange sneakers are ugly, but she is happy with them and they are her feet after all, so I let her get them.

I walk fast and Jenna was doing her best to keep up with me. Finally she asked 'Mom, when you walk this fast does it hurt your sides?' I told her 'No. Are your sides hurting?' She said yes and I decided it was time to slow down.

I'll have to walk for exercise by myself. Everyone that goes out for a walk with me complains. Google Earth has a nifty tool that will measure out the distances for you. I have walks mapped out for 1km, 2-1/2km, 5km and 6km. I decide how far I feel like walking and head out the door. We're still working on the papers for my car - I think they will be ready tomorrow. I wonder how much walking I will manage in the future.


My life and some new blogs

I've had a few busy days.

On Sunday I gave a presentation at the ELTEX conference an Education Exhibition and English Language Conference with my colleague Alea. We did a presentation about how we got our students to improve their writing and reading skills by posting them on a blog we created for our school. We were supposed to go on stage at 8:30pm but one of the speakers had to cancel and so we took his timeslot at 5. Actually it was better, we got it over with sooner and could then enjoy the other speakers and the exhibition.

We first had to explain what a blog was since blogs and blogging are a new idea in Libya. I got some good feedback from many of the people there and the director of a school in Benghazi is going to create a blog for his school and then we'll link our to school blogs together and try to get the students to do something together. I'll keep you posted as to how it goes.

Yesterday afternoon was spent at the conference and today was spent at home. Mustafa…

More on the sandstorm

Remember that sand storm we had recently? I'm still trying to clean up the dust in my house. I wipe up the dust and it seems like in only a few minutes it looks as if I've never dusted. NASA's Earth Observatory has some really interesting pictures and commentary about the storm. Click on the image above to have a look. It's really quite fascinating!

Something old, something new . . .

There's a huge crater that was recently discovered in the Sahara Desert on the border between Egypt and Libya. Click on the image of Gogle Earth Blog above to see more.

PhotoFriday - Feminine

Photofriday - Feminine
I've been out window shopping - one of my favourite hobbies! One thing that I've noticed lately is mannequins that have their heads removed. I thought it might be an Islamic thing since Muslims are not supposed to make graven images. But nowadays I've been seeing blindfolded mannequins. Is this supposed to make them look kind of kinky? hmmm . . . . Frederick's of Tripoli . . . hehehehe . . . Maybe it's a new kind of khimar (face veil) for the modern and trendy set . . .


I've got wheels! Yes, finally after living here for 17 years (and having a Libyan driver's licence for all that time) I finally have a car. Well, nearly - we're still working on getting the papers and insurance etc. for it. But hubby assures me that it will be mine.

It has a temporary licence plate on it and we drove it out to the farm and washed off the sand from the resent sandstorm. It isn't brand new, but nearly - and it has snow tires on it because it came from Canada. We have to change those as we've obviously got no snow here.

I will be happy when I can finally take off and drive it where I please. Of course my wandering spirit is one of the reasons why I haven't been allowed to have a car at my disposal all these years in the first place. Hubby knows only too well that if I get the urge I will just jump in the car and take off. For example: If the thought occurs to me that I need some new couscous dishes I'll think nothing of heading for Gharian to …