Monday, December 31, 2007

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Times Square Messages

Last chance to join in Times Square fun on New Years Eve .This article will tell you how you can post a message that will be put on a virtual wall in Times Square and on real confetti . Have some fun and write a message for a stranger to read on New Years Eve !

New Years Resolutions

At this time of year everyone is talking about making New Years resolutions . How they want a fresh start , a new beginning , a chance to make changes in their lives .I never make New Years resolutions anymore because I discovered I was making unrealistic promises to myself that I was incapable of keeping . Then I would become frustrated with myself, which would lead to depression , SO ....I said the heck with all that !I found these quotes about New Years resolutions on a widget I have on my side bar called "The Daily Stick" .
Thought I would share them with you .

New Years resolutions is something that goes in one year and out the other !

I think in terms of the days resolution , rather than the years . Henry More

To make an end is to make a new beginning . T.S. Eliot

May all your troubles last as long as your resolutions . Joey Adams

Many people look forward to the New Years for a new start on old habits .

So .... Happy New Years to all of you all over the world . May it bring you prosperity , health ,wealth , and most of all , happiness .

Friday, December 28, 2007

The Colors Of Love Quiz

Try this quiz out and see what your love colors are !

I just took this quiz "The Colors of Love Test" .It says that I am a Sensual Lover . Uh huh ! Well , find out yours and see if it is close .

Click this link to take the quiz .

http://web.tickle.com/rd/52658/invite?type=t&test=3032&inviter_id=bVv8PGxbLBf2evAW&inviter=Sydney

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Seasons Greetings !

Not more I can say here !






If you saw this guy on a roof top you weren't in bed where you belonged !







This New Years Eve ring out the old !







Do Not Disturb on Jan. 1 , 2008 !
Happy New Years to all !
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Thursday, December 20, 2007

Eid Libyan Style

Eid From A Libyan Point Of View !


The Men Say :

I bought the sheep .
I killed the sheep .
I ate the sheep .

The Women Say :

I prepared the sheep .
I cooked the sheep .
I ate the sheep .


The Children Say :

I ate the sheep !!!
I ate the sheep !!!!
I ate the sheep !!!!!


Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Eid Mubarak !



This a new postage stamp issued by the U.S. postal services . It says Eid Mubarak .





This also is a Eid Greeting .


Wish all of you and your families a bountiful Eid filled with peace .
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Saturday, December 15, 2007

Seasons Greetings

Seasons Greetings !

This is really a very special season . It could be called the Season of Lights since two of the holidays have to do with Lights. It is also known as the Holy Season . There is Hanukkah Dec.4-11 , commemorating the revolt of the Maccabess by the lighting of candles every night for a week . On Dec.19th this year, the all holy Muslim celebration of Eid Al Adhud, commemorating Abraham's submission to God by his willingness to sacrifice his son's life on Gods command, is celebrated by sacrificing a sheep. Christmas on the Dec.25 is the celebration of Jesus' birth and is one of the holiest days in Christianity .This followed by the African- American holiday imported from Africa, Kwanzaa on the 26th of Dec. This also a holiday filled by light .

Many of the celebrations are marked with family gatherings that include gift exchanges , the lighting of candles , lavish food served with love , music to lift the spirit , prayers , and happiness that naturally follows such a wonder filled time .

I have many things to celebrate this season . They are not on the Earth shaking scale of things when compared to all the miracles that this time of year seems to wittiness , but none the less they are, by my standards, still miracles ! My family and friends are doing well . Many of my prayers have been answers this past month or two . My daughters are either having babies, or getting married. My son and his growing family are doing well . My husband continues to be in good health . These are things that money just can't buy . I give thanks for these blessings .

I am reflecting on this seasons significance to all of us . What it brings to our lives and how to incorporate this into my daily life all year long . The riches we receive that are sometimes overlooked because they become mundane in our everyday life . What a wondrous time of year we celebrate in our many different ways. The fellowship of Man and Spirit . A holy time filled with Light . So , Seasons Greetings to all of you from me . Have a Holy , wonder filled , holiday season that brings the light of love in to your life .

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Souk It and See It In Old Tripoli

Here's an article that I found recently in the NZ Herald , a news paper on line from Kuwait . I have taken the liberty to edit out the political remarks by the author , if you wish to read the complete article , go to this link :

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/section/7/story.cfm?c_id=7&objectid=10480191



Libya: Souk it and see in old Tripoli

5:00AM Saturday December 08, 2007

Joanne O'Conner


Walid shakes his head sadly when I say: "I'll give you 12 dinars for the necklace." Then, when I come back with: "Oh all right then, 15. Fifteen dinars," a look of pain ripples across his face, as if I have offended him. "How much then?" I ask, exasperated.

"No dinar. I don't want your money. It's a gift."

Something very odd is happening. This is the fourth shop in Tripoli's old town that my friend, Andie, and I have walked into, clutching our hot, little wad of money, and so far we've failed to spend a single penny.

It started in the market, when the man on the fruit stall wouldn't let us pay for a bag of dates. Then, in the patissierie, the boy with eyelashes as long as a camel's shyly insisted that we take two pieces of baklava. Now Walid is fastening beads around my neck and inviting us to have a cappuccino with him in his tiny Aladdin's cave of a shop in the copper souk.

This wouldn't happen in Marrakesh, I think to myself. But this is not Morocco; it is Libya, where tourists are more a source of mild curiosity than wallets on legs.

Against the deafening clang of hammers on metal from the workshops, Walid says something I am to hear several times here: "Your gift to us is that you visit us and you go home and tell people that Libya is not a bad place. We are not bad people."

Like most tourists, I've come on an organised tour. To get a visa, you need to book with a tour operator. It's forbidden to travel around the interior without a guide. There are 11 in our group plus Stan, the tour leader, Milud, a local guide, and a chubby young man with freckles and red hair. He doesn't speak any English and, at first, nobody seems to know who he is, but Stan tells us that every time they go to the bathroom he shows Stan his gun and winks, so we surmise he's our armed guard.

The Severan Arch in Leptis Magna. Photo / Brian Fallow

Tripoli is a low-key and likeable place. Outside the walls of the old town, young men in combat trousers and designer sunglasses shop for trainers and DVDs, while old men sit drinking coffee in the shade of jacaranda trees.

Inside the walls of the medina, the ancient part of the city, is akin to winding back the clock a couple of centuries. Narrow lanes each have a designated purpose or trade. In the spice souk, pale-skinned Berber women with tattooed chins shop for dried herbs, cinnamon and ginger. Another street hums to the drone of sewing machines. The closer to the centre you burrow, the further back in time you seem to go.

The medina has been sinking into dereliction since World War II, when it was damaged by bombs. Many families left to live in the houses abandoned by the Italians. Once beautiful buildings are occupied by poor migrant workers who have crossed the desert from Chad and Niger.

Tripoli doesn't have the snake-charmers, fire-eaters, the energy or heady exoticism of Marrakesh or Cairo. But nor does it have hordes of tourists or pushy salesmen. It allows you the luxury of being an observer.

Libya's Roman heritage is never far from the surface. Nowhere is it more spectacularly preserved than at Leptis Magna. A 90-minute drive east along the coast road from Tripoli, Leptis is Libya's biggest tourist draw. Yet, on the day we visit, we have it entirely to ourselves.

Once a Phoenician port, it became one of the great cities of the Roman empire. Today, frogs hop over intricate mosaic floors of the villas, weeds push between the smooth paving stones and the old Roman baths are filled with rainwater.

In the forum, Gorgon heads stare down blindly and columns inscribed with Latin lie toppled on their side. The only sound that can be heard is the quiet roar of the sea. It doesn't take a great leap of imagination to picture the original inhabitants going about their business. At times I feel like I'm trespassing.

We fly south to Sebha, gateway to the Sahara, and are met by our drivers. There's a bit of a scrum among the ladies in the group to ride with Abdel, a Tuareg who cuts an imposing figure, dressed head to toe in indigo, his eyes peeping from his blue headscarf.

I jump into a jeep with Sanusi who, despite the blazing heat, is wearing a full-length woollen overcoat. He has customised his dashboard with camel fur. Tuareg tribal music plays on the cassettes as we head into the desert, the road ahead stretching into infinity.

After miles of monotony, I spot a lake in the hazy distance surrounded by palm trees.

"Water?" I ask Sanusi. He smiles and shakes his head: "Mirage."

We camp in the Akakus mountains, an eerie landscape of strange rock formations, close to the Algerian border. While we put up our tents, the cook rustles up a dinner of camel and macaroni, which tastes better than it sounds. After our meal, we sit around the camp-fire while the drivers sing and drum on plastic water carriers.

They ask us for a song. There's lots of embarrassed shuffling and coughing until Grant, the photographer, treats them to a rendition of a cartoonish old English tune called Any Old Iron. They don't ask us again.

We spend the next two days exploring the more outlandish geological features of this area and stopping off at caves to admire the incredible rock art. Although the area is remote, we bump into several convoys of tourists following a similar trail.

Some of the paintings depict crocodiles, giraffe and elephants, which historians believe date them to 10,000 BC when the desert was a fertile savannah. On the third day, we head north to Ubari - the Sahara desert of the imagination.

They call it a sand sea and it's an apt description, for there is something liquid about the way the dunes undulate. As the jeep lurches up and over the endless, soft, rolling peaks, I even start to feel seasick.

We set up camp and climb to the top of a nearby dune, sinking knee-deep into the warm sand as we watch the sun set. There's no birdsong, no breeze. Not a tree or a road - or even a vapour trail in the sky. Just sand and blue sky.

That night I finally pluck up the courage to abandon the tent and sleep under the stars. I see enough shooting stars to run out of wishes and wake in the cold, grey dawn to find countless little paw prints of various shapes and sizes in the sand around me.

Piles of litter by the roadside tell us we are leaving the desert the next day. But there's one last treat in store. The Ubari lakes are oases fed by underground rivers, which sit like miracles in the middle of the desert.

Gebroun, the largest, is surrounded by reed beds and palm trees, and has spawned a minor tourism industry. There's a ghost village of mud-brick houses where Tuareg salesmen display silver jewellery and a few cafes selling cold drinks. After my time in the desert, I had fantasised about diving into the cool water but I find it's oily and stagnant.

At Tripoli airport, I make a last valiant attempt to spend my remaining dinar. But it's no good. The man in the kiosk has other ideas. "You come into my shop. Take what you like. Christmas present. You are my friend."

I leave Libya with a heavy heart and a singing camel under my arm.

- OBSERVER

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Global Incident Map

Here is a link that some one sent to me . It shows a world map with all sorts of strange and dangerous things that are currently happening all around the world in real time . It is updated "every" 300 seconds . Look and see what is happening where you live . It allows you to move the map around . You may also click on a location and upload the story that is shown for that location .This is scary to think that there are enough things happening every 300 seconds globally to merit an updated that often . What did you see when you looked ?
http://www.globalincidentmap.com/home.php


Sunday, December 2, 2007

Vacation Day

Not too much happening around here this past week end . We took a Vacation Day today . This means that I did nada , zilch , zero , nothing . Fantastic ! I had to feed Moe and I but only by doing the littlest possible that I could get away with . I didn't vacuum , wash the dishes , dust , do a load of laundry , or the trash . I didn't even make the the bed , which has become a daily habit that I somewhere along the line have acquired . My mother would be so happy to know that !

I slept most of the day , whiled away the hours doing nothing much just enjoying my Day of Vacation from everyday chores . It was nice , but by sunset I couldn't ignore the dust that blew in last night when it was windy . I couldn't stand the sight of the dirty dishes piled high in the sink . It made me nervous . The trash I could no longer stuff into the trash can because it was nearly over flowing . I wanted a hot cooked meal . Clean clothes would be nice too .

After the call to prayers at sunset , I jumped up and started to dust . Then I made a hot dinner for the two of us . I ran a quick vacuum over the carpets , just to be neat . After dinner I washed up all the dishes , while I started a load of laundry . When all these chores were finished I made a lovely hot fresh cup of coffee for Moe and I to sip on as we watched a soccer game . He smiled at me and asked ,How did you enjoy your Vacation Day ? I said it was just fine until sunset came , then the Vacation Day was over ! LOL !

Monday, November 26, 2007

Bubble Wrap , Bumper Stickers , And Gum

We are Still eating turkey 4 days after Thanksgiving . Good thing I only cooked the breast, huh ? We have had turkey left over turkey....... sandwiches , turkey salads ,turkey hash , and turkey and eggs . I am here to say , I hope I never see another turkey until next Thanksgiving !!!!


Sign on the bumper sticker at the very end of my blog , along the bottom says ...

You say I am a bitch like it was a bad thing .

Mop and glow , the 3 Mile Island clean up .

Allow me to introduce my selves !

Chaos , panic , and disorder , my work here is done .

Therapy is expensive .Popping bubble wrap is cheap . You choose .

And for your added therapy pleasure I have placed some bubble wrap to pop at the end of the left hand side widgets ! Try it out . It even has a warp speed . It really does sooth you somehow or another , like popping bubble gum . I know that is considered a disgusting annoying habit, but when I pop my gum it releases all kings of negative energy . Really , you should try it sometime .

Saturday, November 24, 2007

A Good Season In Life

I hope every one had a lovely Thanksgiving this past Thursday that celebrates this holiday . I felt a little better so went ahead and cooked the whole turkey dinner thing ; dressing , mashed potatoes , etc. It turned out pretty nice if I say so myself . Of course we will be eating turkey for the next month !

This seems to be a eventful time for some of my friends and family . Khadija Teri has gone off to Malta to rescue a friend that is recovering from surgery there . That's pretty exciting , since like me, Teri has been here forever . So happy that she gets to have a chance to travel . Then another friend that has been in England these past 4 months is coming home today . Can't wait to see her . My oldest daughter has her birthday today . I can't believe it . It seems just like yesterday when I had her . My youngest daughter has announced that she will be adding one more to the family in July/August sometime . We are all tickled pink , or will it be blue , over this new addition to the families . My little grandson is in the process of cutting his 1st teeth , so that means he is growing like a weed .

The weather here has been pretty nice too this last week . All in all , things are ( gosh , I hope I don't jinx myself ) pretty good .It seems we have so much to be thankful for this moment in time. Why don't you leave a comment below , in the comment section, telling us what you have to be thankful for also .

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving !


Wishing you all a very happy Thanksgiving filled with much to be thankful for this year .
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The Great Turkey

This is HAlf of The Great Turkey that I found after searching high and low all over Tripoli this year . I had to have it cut in half just so I could get the thing home .I admit it was way more than I bargined for , this monster turkey , yes it was !Oh , I had grand plans this year for the Great Turkey . I was going to make the very best stuffing in the whole world , mashed potatoes with creamy smooth gravey , corn , green bean salad ,and for dessert , I wanted to make pies ! Chocolat mirang , pumpkin , apple/pear tort , and a carrot cake to top it all off .We were going to have our son , his wife , and grandson over to celebrate as a family .I saw it just like a Hallmark card in my head . BUT.... mother nature had another idea for me instead , the flu ! So , here I sit with a fever , acking all over , sniffling and feeling sorry for myself now that all my plans have gone out the window .The Great Turkey sits in the freezer mocking me saying "na na na !" So , now I am plotting revenge on the Great Turkey for when I am well . I am determined that we will eat the thing once I am well enough to stand up in the kitchen all day to cook . Thanksgiving is just delayed in our house , not scrapped ! Haaaha , take that you frendish bird !
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Saturday, November 17, 2007

Sunsets To Die For



This is the fantabulous nightly veiw from our balconey at The Condo On The Seaside. Imagine this happens every single night ! Wanted to share it with you .
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Thursday, November 15, 2007

New / Old Rule

Some of you may or may not know of this rule in Libya that your passport must be translated into Arabic . The rule was relaxed for a while but due to new developments , it was revised this week . Read the below article from A.F.P. news service .

Libya refuses to compromise on travel restrictions

TRIPOLI (AFP) — Libya on Tuesday confirmed it will turn away Western visitors to the north African nation unless they provide Arabic translations of their passports.

"Libya will not reverse its decision, nor will it take into consideration the international reaction" and uproar triggered by the new restrictions, a Libyan official told AFP.

"The West demands that we translate our passports into English and therefore we must act in kind. It is only normal," said the official.

"Travellers arriving with foreign language passports are perturbing officials at border posts and airports because they don't know foreign languages," he added.

On Sunday Libya turned back scores of passengers on a flight from Paris because they failed to provide Arabic translations of their passports.

The official insisted that the rule was not new.

"Libya adopted Arabic as the country's sole language since the revolution but in a bid to encourage tourism it scrapped the measure" in 2005, before reviving it this month.

"We must defend our Arabic language. There will be no compromise," he said.

The measure is in response to a decision to prevent Libyans with visas for the EU's Schengen border-free zone from entering certain European countries, notably France and Britain, a Libyan aviation official said.

The current Schengen zone nations include France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Norway and Iceland, but not Britain or Ireland.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

A Film Festival In Tripoli

I found this news tid-bit in a Maltese on line news paper . Wonder , will Tomcat , Brangalina ,or Robert Redford be at the premier ? LOL ! I am waiting to see Jonny Depp ! See ya there .


"The Great Directors Film Festival” is to be inaugurated in Tripoli, Libya, tomorrow , November 14, 2007.

The film festival is being organized by the Italian Cultural Institute in collaboration with the Tripoli Municipality People’s Committee for Culture and Information and with the participation of the Embassies of Brazil, Canada, Egypt, France, Germany, Italy, Republic of Korea, Japan, Malta, Poland, Serbia, Switzerland, Turkey and the USA. Sixteen films are participating in the festival.

Nasser Al-Qattari’s "The Ambassadors", a 1980 Libyan production, will be screened at the festival’s opening night ceremony to be held at the Al-Fatah Cinema in Tripoli at 8pm. "

Friday, November 9, 2007

The Walls

Here are a couple of examples of walls already up along the sea road further into town . This one totally blocks all views of the sea .


Oh , here's a view to the sea ... through a forgotten door left open , oops ! Can you glimpse the sea in the distance ?
Poor palm trees half buried in sand that is being used to make embankments the rest of the way into town .At least they plant grass on the embankments further along the road .But no sight of the sea , sigh !
I found this one gap in the embankment where you might spy the sea ... if you look real quick !
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The Sea Veiw Road

In A previous post " Oh Say Can You See ?" I wrote of the fact that walls were going up all along the coastal road Al Fatah causing the lose of a wonderful view to the sea . In the below pictures you can see how lovely the drive is into Tripoli .


The below picture shows construction for a new sidewalk all along the road . The metal posts are for attaching corrugated steal as a temporary wall .
The below picture shows the contempt that Mother Nature has for the proposed wall .She blew it into twisted metal night before last in a storm !
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Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Shocking News To Me

I found this blog surfing the other day and received a shock when I read this report . I am not too sure just how accurate this report is but it's worth the time to read it . I accessed it from The Tripoli Post newspaper . It reports the emerging of a underground group known by the name of The Libya Islamic Fighting Group . Here is a very short exert from the blog post :

"Abu al-Laith is a senior Al-Qaida military commander and likewise a key principle behind the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG)... While it is certainly interesting to see both Al-Qaida and LIFG leaders openly acknowledging a formal relationship with each other, this is hardly what one would term "new news."

http://mypetjawa.mu.nu/archives/189999.php

Monday, November 5, 2007

Amazing Sands

Beautifil sand dunes .

Car coming over the top of a white sand dune .
Desert tornado .
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Modern Day Caravan In The Libyan Desert

This rock formation is in the middle of white sands .
White sands with ancient black volcano lava rock .
The modern day caravan .
Time out to rest .
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Saturday, November 3, 2007

Was Libya Framed For Lockerbie

I read this article in the Tripoli Post newspaper on line . For years we in Libya have heard all sorts of things in regards to the Lockerbie Pan Am bombing of flight 103 . I don't normally post political things on this blog but this is a different view of a tragic loss . Please read with a open mind .


http://www.africanpath.com/p_blogEntry.cfm?blogEntryID=2349

Friday, November 2, 2007

Look What We Are Getting

This was pasted on to me by a reliable source .....

Hertz says it is to open its first car rental location in the Libyan capital of Tripoli. The news comes as Libya re-emerges into the wider world of commerce after a period of isolation and as more western airlines serve the country. Hertz will enter into a franchise agreement with Trans-Africa for the Import of Cars and Spare Parts (TAIC), a company that has operated in Libya for 20 years in the automotive industry. As well as downtown offices, Hertz will also open a location at Tripoli airport that will feature vehicles including four-wheel drives and other services such as Chauffeur Drive and hotel deliveries. [ABTN]

Now if they would only send us a WalMart , Target , or even a Sam's Club . I am waiting so patiently !

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Oh Say Can You See?

Oh say can you see the … sea? That will soon be the new refrain around Tripoli . I noticed on the way into Tripoli today that a new wall of corrugated steal is being erected in front of the already existing low cement wall in place along most of the sea road from the east going west into town . Once the road was a lovely ride with a uninhibited view of the sea as far as the eye could see, now it is being chopped up into segments with different types of walls to obstruct the view for some unknown reason. I noticed also that where there used to be little hotels and restaurants along the seaside farther in town they have all been knocked down which is not a bad thing in it's self because they were not kept up and many times they were hang out places for undesirables . After they were all torn down there was a fantastic view of the harbor and the approaching town . NOW, the powers that be have decided to make a earthen bank all along the sidewalk and are planting grass on the banks. Ok , that looks nice , cuts down on flying sand when windy but where is the view of the sea ? Then on top of that , they have piled the sand half up the tall mature palm trees trunks that are standing sentinel along the sidewalks . Can that be good for the trees ? Sometimes you can't help but wonder to yourself … What Where They Thinking ! If I can I will take some pictures of this disaster in the making . Libya has one of the longest coast lines of North Africa and just about the most unspoiled coast of all the Med . What a shame we will no longer be able to enjoy the view .

Speaking of unspoiled views of the sea , There is some very serious gossip making the rounds here on this side of town at least , that all the empty beaches between Tagura and Tripoli will be made in large private beach resorts catering to the tourist trade . That’s a good thing tourist are being courted to come into the country helping to boost the economy with the ensuing new jobs in the hotel and catering business , but am sure that most of those jobs will be going to foreign labor since an average Libyan would consider it beneath them to work as a waiter , maid ,or any other laborer that will be needed to run a hotel .Maybe on the construction side of things there will be more jobs for Libyans , but I doubt that also since most of those contracts will be given to outsiders , here again . There is even big talk that we will have an American hospital here teamed up with Libyans . Now that will be a good thing . This will save many from having to make the long and expensive trip for medical care outside the country , as long as they can afford it that is . Will be interesting to see what really will happen in the future .

The other day my son and daughter in law came to take me out. We were listening to a cassette tape I had made of classic rock and roll. Kamal stopped to go to the store while Abir and I stayed in the car.The song "Rock and Roll Hoochie Coo " started to play and I was singing along with it . Abir knows a little English but was really stumped by "hoochie coo" . She asked me what that meant , hoochie coo .I had all these mental pictures running around in my mind of what hoochie coo was but for the life of me I could not figure a way to explain it to her on my limited Arabic. I started to laugh wondering what she would think if I could explain it to her. She sat there staring at me like had lost my mind .Kamal came back to the car and asked what I was laughing about and I told him . He smiled, looked at Abir and told her , " Honey , never mind. It's a American thing . We don't have that here !" How would you explain hoochie coo?

Sunday, October 28, 2007

In Rememberance

In Memorial

Stanley Studney

Elizabeth Studney

Salem Sherif

Virginia White

George Pearson

Mustafa Benlasher

Haja Fatuma

Aiyada Abdulrahman

Sebastian / Bashir Mutawa

Khalifa Sherif

Mohamed Sherif

Charles Deffenbaugh

Marsha Bowman

Arthur Kelly

Florence Baker

Don Roy Baker

Haroun Hamed

Lorin Baker

Aileen Deffenbaugh

Saundra Kelly

Carole Anne Sedita

Dr. Ali Benlasher

Miss them all, may they rest in peace .

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Tricker Treat !



Happy Halloween ! Keep a sharp eye out in case of any attacks by werewolves , zombies , witches, or ghosts ! And don't forget those pesky vampires either !
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Winter Is Here !

Winter arrived here two days ago . It made everyone go scrambling for the blankets and the winter clothes . Nice to be able to turn off the air conditioner for a change . It feels so good this cool fall/ winter weather we are having . Everyone has a kick to their step .The air is so fresh now that the rains have washed everything clean of dust from the last year .The sky has cleared . This is the first time most of us can remember it raining so much this early in the fall. It has rained almost as much now as we had all last year . Really great weather . Wish it could stay like this all the time .

We had a death in the family also this week . Mohamed's oldest brother Dr. Ali Benlasher has passed away from a stroke .We are at his funeral all this week. So many people are coming that it makes your head whirl . He was the very first person to graduate with a doctorates degree in all of Libya . He was something of a institution in his own right here in Libya . There was at one time not one person that went to the university here that didn't have him for their Maths Professor . We will miss him so .

Friday, October 19, 2007

Priest Moved By Islam

A friend sent this to me . I found it interesting , thought you might too .

Moved by Islam, Priest Embraces Two Faiths

by

Day to Day, September 12, 2007 · The Episcopal Church has suspended one of its priests, Ann Holmes Redding, for one year after her announcement this summer that she is both a Christian and a Muslim. A local Muslim leader's speech to Redding's church two years ago inspired her to begin attending Muslim prayer services while she was still serving her local diocese.

Chana Joffe-Walt from member station KPLU reports.

Hum !



Things that makes you say "hum" !


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Wednesday, October 17, 2007

The Miracle

Today I was a participant in a miracle . It's true . I was , along with all the other drivers in bound to the City this morning on the freeway . I had to take Moe into town for an appointment at a ungodly hour and the only way to get there in a hurry was the freeway .

I never drive on the freeway , NEVER ! I avoid it like you would the plague . The people normally drive on it like they were NASCAR drivers at the Indianapolis Speedway 500 race .I kid you not , and that is like the very last thing you want to deal with first thing in the morning , or any other time of the day . They not only drive like speed manics but they will cut you off while nearly touching your bumper when they do . Total disregard for safety and life seems to be the main goal , and damn the torpedo's , full steam ahead is the motto for all . Thats why I never drive on the freeway .

But today as I said , I had no choice because we needed to be there quickly and also it has been raining off and on now for the past five days . Libya was not intended to have water on the roads. Many do not have drainage . Those that do don't drain as well as they should , if they drain at all . So , when it rains we have mass flooding .That meant that all the roads to that part of town we were going to was flooded in various stages and would need hours to drive on them . No time for that today .

So , I bit the bullet and decided to go on the freeway . First off the defroster didn't want to defrost . The windows were all fogged up . I couldn't see . Then there was a lot of water before we ever even got to the freeway . I hated that too . But here is where the miracle happens , as I approached the freeway there wasn't any traffic . Then once on the freeway everyone was driving an unheard of 60 - 80 kilometer per hour ! Un - you-know-what believable !!!! All the way into town no one cut off anyone else . There was no honking , no hand gesturing , no speeding , just good driving . If I hadn't seen it for myself would have never believed it possible !
The miracle continued on the trip home as well . I am still in shock .

Today is officially "Fight Poverty Day " all over the world . It affects everyone in one way or another . Think of ways you can help to fight this silent war to help others . Sometimes the smallest thing can make a big difference to someone in need .

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Arabic Soap Oprea

Last year during Ramadan one of the Arabic TV channels brought a really good soap opera . I would tell you the name, but after exhaustively trying to pronounce this correctly , I've thrown in the towel and given up trying . Impossible for my tongue to pronounce .

It is about a small Arab town around the turn of the last century in Syria and the inhabitants lives . Somehow or another Moe and I got hooked , along with half of the Arab world , into watching this show nightly very religiously . It captivated your attention , the lives of the these people and at the same time gave you a slice of history .

The main character is married and has grown children . His oldest daughter is in a stormy marriage . His other daughter is a mute . Then he has two other daughters that are teenagers , and also two sons that are very different from one another. Towards the end of the series the oldest son marries and lives with the parents with his bride . Of course there is instant trouble in paradise and the ensuing troubles results in the father telling his long and faithful wife of many years he is divorcing her. That was a shock for all the viewers .

So, the next day after this show was the was the Eid . That night they didn't bring the story on ok , maybe because of the Eid ? Then the next night the same thing . I watched that Arabic channel for four days before the channel announced that this was only a Ramadan show . The next installment would be the following year , this year .

I never watch Arabic TV because my Arabic isn't sufficient even after all these years to deal with all the different Arab dialects and the nuances of the language . Moe years ago bowed out of being the translator, so I just sorta gave up on Arabic TV . Luckily for me the advent of satellite TV came along nearly the same time and I had English language TV to view . So , the fact that I watched this show , WITH Moe , and continued to search for it four days after the last installment was a big deal.

Then this year about two weeks before Ramadan started adverts for this same soap opera began telling viewers that it would be back on this year . There was a lot of buzz going around town when this news came out .And not just from the female population either ! The men liked this show just as much as the women .

The excitement built up . People were speculating on the threatened divorce , did the father actually divorce the mother ?The first show came finally and he had . Oh my! Things just went down hill from there it seemed . One misadventure after the other happened to the people in the town . Real cliff hangers . On the last night of Ramadan this year we had a conclusion of sorts to the story , but you could tell there was a whole lot more to be told . When the show ended , two of the main characters came out in modern dress to tell us , the audience, that we would just have to wait until next year to learn what had happened . I moaned . Moe groaned . I looked at him and made him PROMISE that if I were to die between now and next Ramadan he was to come to my grave EVERY DAY to tell me what had happened the night before on the show, and you know what ? He promised ! LOL ! Amazing !

My Visit

Last night I went to visit a good friend and neighbor for the Eid . I found her at her mother in laws house along with half of the tribe . Lots of children , sister in laws , aunts , and cousins were there and the chaos that comes with the territory .Lots of kissing and hand shaking , where have you been all year , and how are you's . It was good to see them all again . I always am made to feel welcome when I go to visit . My husband is slightly related to them so it was especially good.

We quickly exhausted all topics of conversations as a group, so my friend and I sat and talked quietly for a while among ourselves, always keeping an eye on our hostess for signs of any disgruntledness of our conversation making her feel left out .

After a while we noticed that we were being watched as a curiosity rather than a part of the group so we decided that it was time to speak in Arabic again , to include the rest of the ladies . I was at a loss for a topic since we had already talked about the usual things such as our husbands, our children , Ramadan , food ,who was sick, dead , and dieing . That about covered the whole spectrum as far as I could figure out except marriage and we had covered that one two hours ago .

Then I remembered a thing I had read from one of my e mail friends about the nose being as long as a persons thumb . I knew a couple of other things like that so I asked them did they know that their thumb was approximately as long as their nose ? That started them all measuring their noses with their thumbs .

We all were laughing about that . I then asked them who could roll their tongue ? That was really funny to watch while they contorted their faces trying to roll their tongues. Some could , while others couldn't . Just as they were recovering from that some one asked who could put their leg behind their head . Well , by this time all the kids were in on the act and doing what kids do best .This moved on to walking on crossed knees, pressing the thumb back against the inside of the wrist , much laughter , and measuring the foot along the inside forearm from the wrist to the crook of the elbow to show that it was the same size . By this time we were laughing so hard that we had tears streaming down our faces because these somber dignified women had become like little children having old fashion silly fun .When I left to come home some of the women were still trying to recover from their acrobatics . It was a fun time .

Monday, October 15, 2007

The Eid and Other Thoughts

I have to say this has been by far the very best Ramadan and Eid I have had ever in 36 years! Ramadan was easy and for the most part calm . The Eid has been delightfully filled with family and friends calling or dropping by at a nice steady pace .

So neat to see how the kids have grown , the adults have changed , and things just stay the same , lol . One person came to visit that doesn't talk to us all year and all I could only wonder the whole time he was here was what does he want ? Terrible I know but it does make you wonder what his motives were since he is the sort that ALWAYS has a motive for everything . My daughters called and made our day . We sorely miss them since they live over seas now and we don't get to spend holidays together anymore . My son and his wife , with the new baby came over too and that was fantastic !That baby ... well I won't bore you with all those typical grandmother stories but he is so smart . Heard from a long lost friend . That was pretty special .

I went visiting today . I had to get out of the Condo On The Seaside , into the fresh air that was cool , blowing right off the sea . There were promising rain clouds that made me yearn for "home" . I always get home sick this time of the year here in Libya when the weather hints of cooler days ahead .There is a taste of southern US fall in the air that causes memories to cascade in my mind that nearly transports me back to " home" . I stopped thinking of the US as "home " years ago since Libya is "home " to me now after all these years . I think that this is almost the only time I do get homesick anymore .

Later this evening after I returned from my visit it started to rain . Not in buckets or sheets , but in a gentile soft patter moved by a breeze that could caress your face like a lover would . Songs ran through my mind as I stood on the balcony and stared into the night . The Eurythmics song ," Here Comes The Rain Again " and Eddie Rabbit's " I love The Rainy Nights" tumbled over and over in my mind, until I had to come inside and play them on my MP3 player.

What a gift tonight has been . A wild thought ran across my mind briefly to go running through the rain onto the beach with arms thrown wide open , but then I got a grip , lol ! Can you imagine if anyone would have seen this happen what they would have thought on seeing this older foreign woman running wildly on the beach in the rain ? Makes me chuckle just thinking about it. Maybe I should have done it anyway . I could have started a trend ...... or maybe not .


P.S. Well, as I was fooling around on the net the gentile patter of rain and the soft breeze has turned into a raging storm with sheets of rain lashing the Condo and gale force winds bashing the shutters on the windows . Good thing I decided not to run amuck on the beach tonight after all !

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Turning Green

Khadijateri called this Fox News story to my attention .

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,301541,00.html

All about the Empire State Building in New York turning Green, green being the Islamic color , in celebration for Eid El Fitr yesterday , October 12, 2007 ! Ok ! Way to go New York City ! Who would have thunk it ?

EID MUBARAK

EID MUBARAK TO ALL . HOPE YOUR EID IS FILLED WITH PEACE AND HAPPINESS .PROSPERITY IN THE COMING YEAR FOR YOU AND YOUR LOVED ONES .

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Down By The Sea


This is one of my favorite pictures . It is of two traditionally dressed Libyan women and a child sitting on the rocky beach in ZunZur , a small bedroom community outside of Tripoli to the west.
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