Showing posts from February, 2008

Libyan History

If you are interested in history, particularly the Ottoman Empire, you might want to check out this book I found online:

Essential Histories: The Ottoman Empire 1326 - 1699

The pirate king called Khair ad-Din, who is also known as Barbarossa or Red Beard, conquered Tripoli in 1538 and the Ottomans arrived to occupy Tripoli in 1551. The Ottoman Empire's rule in Libya ended in 1911 when Italy invaded.

March 2nd is a public holiday in Libya. It's the anniversary of the amendment of the country's constitution and the establishment of popular congresses and people's committees - a part of more recent history (March 2, 1977). The kids have the day off school and I'm going to take the day off too. Hopefully I will spend it reading about the Ottoman Empire.

The book looks wonderful; 94 pages with lots of pictures. It covers more than just the Libyan part of their Empire, but reading it will give a good idea about the influence this part of Libya's history has on life toda…

Weekend Adventures

My weekend was lovely! Friday afternoon was spent at a gathering of my friends. We took an afternoon out of our busy lives to; meet, laugh, catch up on our news and of course eat. It was a potluck bonanza! Everyone brought a dish or two. One thing is for sure - no one ever goes home hungry or empty handed when we all get together because there is always enough to eat and also to take a sample of this or that home to the unlucky members of your family that didn't come along.

Saturday I had a positive shopping experience (at least for me). My friend Tara and I decided we would see what Suk Al-hise in Al-hani was all about. It was horrible! The stuff they are selling would be classified as 'cheap crap'. In one section they had some CDs for sale and Tara stopped and got a CD of Tamer Hosni - her latest heart-throb. As we left we decided that 'Suk Al-hise is one place we will not waste time visiting again.' Unfortunately Tara discovered upon returning home, that the CD …

The daily drive

I'm the official driver that takes Ibrahim to and from school. Actually I don't mind this because it gives us time to be alone together. We talk about things and we argue a lot. For a while Ibrahim would pitch a huge fit every time we drove past a toy store. He had this idea that we should stop and buy him a remote controlled car. Many times I have to pull over and stop to avoid having an accident. Everyday is some kind of adventure.

Ibrahim rides in the front next to me because he can't be trusted to behave himself alone in the back seat. If left to himself in the back he would be opening the door and trying to get out, hanging out the windows, making faces and shooting birds at neighbouring cars and if he gets angry there is always the chance that he will bonk me over the back of my head with something or take a pencil out of his book bag and stab me with it.

So to keep him somewhat under control he sits up front next to me with the seatbelt tightly fastened. He is still…

A change in plans

Last week I was busy with ELTEX and had a light schedule at work. On Thursday I checked in to see how things were going and my secretary informed me that over the weekend the building directly across from the school would be demolished. I thought 'How nice that they plan it for the weekend. The demolition won't disrupt classes.'

On Sunday, the beginning of my work week, I drove to work expecting the neighbouring building to be gone but when I went to turn into the road I found the workers just beginning.

I sat in my car and watched the bulldozers, dust and debris. Huge chunks of broken cement were falling around the equipment which filled the road that had been blocked off from normal traffic. I noticed that the workers weren't wearing hardhats or other protective gear and I figured that if they didn't care about their own safety they wouldn't give much thought to anyone else's either. I would never forgive myself if anyone got hurt or injured and it was so n…

Starting out the week...

I am truly enjoying reading On the Edge this morning.

She made me laugh,
she made me cry,
she made my day!


We did it!

UT and I survived our presentation... we didn't fall over from stage fright and no one that attended fell asleep ;-) It all went smoothly. We started about three minutes late because people were still coming in and in the end there was standing room only and the door monitor ended up having to turn people away.

My only regret was that the organizers of the event got my name wrong on all the schedules, brochures and handouts and they didn't add in the description of our presentation either - despite the fact it was on our application forms and all they needed to do was copy and paste... oh well. Never mind... we had a good turnout anyway - and we had a wonderful time too.

Here's the part where I thank everyone.... hehe... like an awards ceremony....

Special thanks to UT for working so hard on this with me. It was so fun working with you. To Tankgirl - you rock! we made you sit through our presentation while we were rehearsing it and you gave us some very helpful feedback. Th…


Getting geared up. UT and I are giving a presentation/workshop this week at ELTEX 2008. We've been working together for the past month preparing. It's really been a pleasure working with UT. We have so much fun when we get together so it really hasn't been like work at all. She's a super special lady. Wish us luck that we don't fall over from stage fright.

Playing with words

Playing with PimPamPum and did this:

Winter Weather in Tripoli


Mountain Biking in Libya

Last year I went with my friend Tara, my husband, and two of my children, to the Nalut Annual Spring festival. Tara, who is an avid mountain biker brought along her bike.

The conditions for mountain biking in the area are fantastic and this year we plan to go back hoping to meet up with more mountain bikers. The festival coordinators have informed us that they would be pleased to have us. We got super hospitality from the people of Nalut last year - you can see my post about it here - and here. The festival was fabulous.

If you're a mountain biker and will be in Libya on April 3rd, 4th and 5th 2008 and would like to come along you can contact me here: relocationlibya @

My pet peeves about Libya

[This is gonna get me a lot of hate]

I'm doing this for therapeutic reasons. Gotta get it off my chest kind of stuff. Yes - I am on a rant! Feel free to add your own pet peeves in the comments.

This is just a running list. They're not in any particular order, just as I think em up. I'll add to the list from time to time and link to it.

1. Plastic fruit. Why do Libyan women buy plastic fruit to decorate their houses? Who the heck wants to look at plastic fruit? Is this a thing they started in the eighties when fruit wasn't imported into Libya and kids grew up not knowing how to eat a banana? Did they buy it so they could remember what fruit looked like? Plastic fruit... uggh.

2. Tuna. Why do Libyans LOVE tuna? I would NEVER even think to eat tuna when I was a kid. Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches ruled (and still do)! If any kid was stupid enough to bring a tuna sandwich to school in their lunch box they would get teased unmercifully as the 'kid who a…

Helping out Tommy

My friend Tommy, who's one of the sweetest guys on the planet, has asked me to help him out. This is what he has to say:

"Unfortunately, my crimes have caught up with me. I need your help to get bail money to get out of jail! Here's the story:

This year, I have the honor and pleasure of participating in the Muscular Dystrophy Association's (MDA) "Lock Up 2008." This is a national effort happening all across the country this year, but I need your help and the help of anyone you know who might have a kind heart and a few dollars to spare. On February 21st, 2008 I will be arrested by Pitt County Police and taken to Jail until I can raise the money necessary for my bail. This "bail" money comes in the form of tax-deductible charitable donations given by you to the MDA. "

If you want to help him out please visit his blog for all the details:

an observation

Why must Brits insist on using the word 'whilst'?

It sounds so affected......... lol

My life is not so ho-hum afterall

Last night I had an adventure of sorts. My day at work was finished and we were on our way to drop my daughter's friend off at her house on the way home. I made it through the dangerous intersection at Benashur and Jaraba Streets - dangerous because the traffic light has been out since they started demolishing Jaraba Street and for some reason instead of putting a traffic cop there for safety they just leave everyone to fend for themselves. Libyans have no idea about the concept of turn taking. They just all try to push their way through the intersection and it's a snarled up mess with angry motorists yelling and glaring at one another as they weave their way through.

Further down the street we turned into the road that would lead us to my daughter's friend's house. I was driving carefully because the area was a bit dark (broken streetlights). All of a sudden I saw someone jump out and rush towards the passenger side of the car.


'What the ....?!?' I exclaim…

An unexpected visitor

Saturday mornings are usually spent with my girls and I doing a thorough cleaning of the house from one end to another. I usually get out of bed, throw on an old housedress, head to the kitchen to put on a pot of coffee and then start right in on the cleaning - stopping as I pass through the kitchen to take a bite or two of a sandwich along with a sip of coffee instead of sitting down to my usual breakfast. When we're through with all the cleaning I head for the shower.

An hour or so into the cleaning found me attacking the dust in my room. My son Yusef came in to tell me there was a neighbour lady at the door wanting to see me. Here I was in a grimy looking housedress, my hair flying about in every direction, with smudges on my face. No time to freshen up, I headed for the door to find the neighbour lady standing there patiently.

After exchanging greetings at the door I told her 'Come on in. I'm afraid you've caught us in the middle of our Saturday morning housecleaning…