Showing posts from November, 2010

Bumper to bumper traffic

The traffic situation during the summit that's being held here has really been a pain. They've closed off roads in all kinds of places and you have to plan your trip carefully to avoid getting stuck someplace. Was this the last day of this craziness? I hope so, because I've got a life to get on with.
More driving headaches are a bunch of new potholes in the main road that goes through Ain Zarah. Maybe I shouldn't call them potholes - they are more like trenches. And there are huge holes in the middle of the 'Khamsa Shwara' intersection. Someone suggested that it's turned into a roundabout. I don't know why they don't just fill in the holes. I guess they are waiting for a few people to get killed first. 
In the Google Earth picture below you can see the brick place I drive past every day - see how the earth is red from the clay the bricks are made from?  The huge trucks that load and unload the bricks are eroding away the sides of the already narrow Ai…

The Rumor Mill

There's is big excitement in Libya these days. The country is playing host to the 3rd AU/EU Summit that will take place on the 29th and 30th of November. There are clean-up crews in all the streets and roads making sure everything is spic and span. The shop doors on the main roads have all been painted with a fresh coat of green paint. Flag poles are being put up in strategic locations and there is a strong presence of security as it's been reported that 80 heads of state will be in attendance.
I looked around on the net to see what I could find out about the summit and I really couldn't find much. I found this link: African Union Summit that says the theme is Investment, economic growth and job creation. The downloadable programme lists an opening statement and lunches, banquets and a group photo. Apparently nothing else has been planned because for each plenary session the topics all say 'to be defined'. It doesn't sound like much will be happening, but I bet …


...... benign.... elhamdulillah! Some of my students told me 'Elf Mabrouk!' which roughly translated means 'one thousand congratulations'... all I could think was that one thousand is just way too small a number... I have soooooo much to be thankful for. I am just blown away... relief... wow! ... I really don't even know what to say... speechless...

Cleaning up

Tomorrow's the end of the Eid break. The kids are bored and spend most of their waking hours fighting with each other. There have been lots of dishes to wash this past week. Really big pots and pans, the kind you have to wash in the garden with the hose because they don't fit in the sink. This has been the girl's job this year. We still have to finish off the gadeed tonight so there will be more dishes for them to wash.
By the way, Nora's osban (Libyan sausage) turned out even better than her aunt's sausage in the taste contest they had at my mother in law's house! I put this up to the fact that Nora put her heart and soul into making it (and she didn't have anyone to distract her with gossip while she did it). This is a big relief for me because now it means she can be our family's official osban maker. Now, when my husband decides he needs a huge dose of cholesterol we can put Nora to work making the offal (awful) stuff.
How am I doing? Well, once, and …

Thanks, recovery and Eid preparations

Special thanks to the staff of Central Hospital, Shara Zawia -Tripoli for taking such great care of me. My surgery went as planned and I am on the mend. Actually, I was in the hospital at 8am and out by 3pm - so it was a short stay. Everything ran according to plan, like a well-oiled machine. The staff were friendly and efficient, the hospital was clean and I was given VIP treatment. Now it's time for me to heal and wait for the pathology report.
I rested at home the remainder of the day, sleeping off the anesthesia. Sara made me wonderful lentil soup and Yusef went to the shop and got me a huge assortment of fresh fruit; navel oranges, three kinds of apples, bananas and melons imported from Italy. It still hurts to swallow anything but I am feeling better. Soon enough I'll be able to yell at the kids even louder than before.
This morning Sara and I went out to do some shopping and run some errands. After a while I got tired and just stayed in the car and let Sara get out to get…

Eid - a break from work??

I've been working almost non-stop since September and now I am officially on Eid break. Eid Aladha, or Eid Alkabir (the big Eid) as many Libyans call it is an Islamic holiday. My break will last a week and then it's back to work again. Am I going to rest and take it easy this week?... of course not! Eid this year falls on November 16th. At least that's what was in the Libyan newspapers here. In the past there's been disputes over the days - Libya celebrating before anyplace else in the world. We'll see what happens this year.
Eid is lots of hard work - it involves slaughtering a sheep and dealing with cutting up all the meat. I dry quite a lot of the meat, making what's called gadeed, a kind of jerky - I've posted the procedure and pictures in the past here: Gadeed
Actually I'm looking forward to Eid this year. The kids are getting older and help out quite a bit. Nora says she's going to make osban (a kind of sausage) this year, and Yusef will be a hu…

Furniture shopping

Since we moved in (over a year ago) I've been procrastinating about furnishing the guest room that is outside next to the garage. I decided that this was going to be the weekend it got done. Yusef and I went out this morning and we picked out and bought a desk, bookcase and sofabed set. The furniture has been delivered and the bookcase and desk are being installed as I type. I even got a wireless extender so there will be internet out there. Tomorrow the air conditioner will be installed and the kitchenette soon afterwards. I need to have some curtains made and installed. Progress is being made!

Hopefully someone will come for a visit now. In the meantime it's going to be used as an office and a quiet place to study.