Friday, June 30, 2017

Mountain Picnic

As the heat increases here (it's already over 100 degrees), it's good to look back at pictures of when it was cooler.

These were taken Easter weekend at a picnic we attended with our teammates and a couple of other families.

Everything was so green.

Almost everyone was eager to hike the mountain, but I stayed behind with Keira and a few.

However, shortly after the group left, Keira ran to catch up with one of the ladies, and they began their ascent.

 When everyone made it back down, we sat down to eat.

After about 15 minutes, two men wondering in the countryside approached us and started playing their instruments.  A squawking horn and a drum.

It was SO loud, and they got louder.

It turns out they wouldn't leave until every man in the group game them money.

I have an 11-second video to show you how loud it was, but it may be too short for YouTube.  It wouldn't let me load it for some reason.

The gang.

This group of kids covers every grade from 4 to 12, plus pre-K.

That's my son looking back :)

Fun day on God's green earth.

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Girls in the Street

Chicken went, went.  He saw him later.  
I will break your eggs.
I take out both your eyes.
Young Mohammed wants a wife that wears a bracelet.

This is the translation to the song "Fat, Fat, Istrahat" I heard the girls singing on the street.


Keira was out playing with the girls, and the actions to the song looked a lot like "Duck, Duck, Goose," except instead of touching each girls head with their hands, they ran a stick over their heads as they passed.

Click here to see another game they played.

I love this!  Huda (along with all the other local girls in the neighborhood), are learning a little English at their school.  When she wrote her name in chalk on my driveway entrance, she still wrote it right to left, just like they do in her language.

One day the girls raced each other in pairs.  I came outside and heard them chanting Keira's name, so I started videoing, but I never saw Keira, so I turned off the video.  In fact, the race was so long, that in the second video, it seems the other girls forgot about the race, too.

However, I started videoing again, when I saw Keira coming down and winning her race (even as she accidentally tripped a girl).  They must have run a long distance before they turned around and came back.

Click here to see the first part of the race.

Click here to see the finish to the race.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Things I See (Vol 2)

This is where I catalogue some of the interesting/funny things I see. 

Previous posts of Things I See:  Here's Your SignCatching my EyeVol 1,

In additions to chickens, our next door neighbor is now raising ducks and turkeys.  Here, the ducks are taking a stroll.  They are very brave because there are some crazy drivers in our neighborhood.

Zain phone company was offering something free to its customers, so people were pushing and shoving to get to the front and get whatever it was .  It drew quite a crowd.

The toys packaged overseas always make me laugh.

"I have a lovely doll, his name is "small cute."
"When my friends come, you will say, 'Let us play the baby home.'"

There was a nice tree outside a local mall, and then one day, I saw all the branches had been cut off.

I didn't take a picture until the next time I came, and it had been spray painted white gold and sprinkled with glitter.


And the next time I saw it, they had added lights.  But I still can't get over the gold and glitter.

Across from this mall and tree is a mosque that I've shown you a picture of before; however, one evening, the moon was above it, matching the crescent moons on the tops of it's minarets.

Back across the street from the mosque, near the golden tree, tour buses from the southern part of this country are always parked in the parking lot.

This one made me smile.

"Ole Frederiksen Turistfart"

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

International Book Fair

I can't recall that I've ever been to an International Book Fair. 


Doug and I decided to check this one out.  I couldn't have read 90% of the books there, even if I had wanted.  The booths were labeled with flags so you could tell where they were from: Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Turkey, Jordan, and other flags I couldn't identify.

And the rows went on and on.

However, there were a few stores like this one that carried books written in English.

And some of the displays were beautiful.  Look at how the bindings on these books fit together like a set of encyclopedias.

And all the different sizes and styles of the Quran you can buy.

There were television crews interviewing different people all over the building.

 But of course, just in case I forgot where I was, there was soon a reminder coming my way.

The power went off.

And funny enough, everyone just kept moving around as usual.

It's just part of life here.

Doug and I didn't buy anything, but Keira used her Valentine's Day money from her grandmother to buy herself an abacus.

And that was that.

Glad for the experience.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Behind the Restaurant

For over a year, we have been taking taxis everywhere.  And one of the first things I learned to say in the language when I moved here was "I live in 'such and such' neighborhood, behind 'such and such' restaurant."

The restaurant is on the bottom two floors of a tall building.  It has a very large sign outside on the building, so almost every taxi driver is aware of it.  So I have talked about this restaurant for a year, but it wasn't until a year had passed that we decided to venture over and try it one day.

We went with our teammates and Keira while the older kids were at school.  We sat down, not knowing what to expect. 

Menus were brought and Doug, Keira and I decided to split one plate of kabob/kebab.

We handed the menus back, and three waiters started bringing food to the table.  We hadn't ordered anything, said anything, done anything.  It was intriguing.

I'm not sure I can identify all of it for you, but there was hummus, mutabbal, baba ghanoush, fattoush salad, green salad, lentil soup, tzatziki dip, Iranian bread, and two other things I tried but couldn't identify.

A yummy treat!  

One meal between the three of us was plenty with all of this other goodness thrown in for "free."