Saturday, May 31, 2008

Babies , Cats , And Food

Way back in the dark ages when I was having children , babies were covered up with blankets . According to my youngest daughter who is expecting her first baby any time now, this is no longer a done thing . Seems there is a danger of the baby smothering .I am worried the baby will freeze to death this coming winter but she assures me this won't be a problem with thick blanket type pajama's they have in America . She wore those same PJ's when she was little , while covered up with a blanket . Now my oldest daughter is pregnant also. I can't wait to hear what she will tell me "we longer do these days MOM !" LOL ! I am sure I never told my mother such things .Oh No !!!! LOL !

My cat is in heat and meowing up a storm , driving Moe,me , and I am very sure the whole building insane . Yes , I know we should and could have her spade . I have a thousand reasons why I haven't , but mainly it boils down to, I just can't do it . She is strictly a in door cat . She never goes out side .There isn't a chance she could get pregnant. She is clean of all bugs ,for those of you about to comment on how nasty it is to have a dirty animal in your home .So , if she goes insane once every three months , I guess we will have to live with it , or at least until I work up some nerve to take her and get her sniped .I wonder , do cats go through "Cat-A-Pause" ?

I forgot to mention a while back I found some Worcestershire sauce , yeah !!! Now , I see there is even A1 Steak sauce on the grocery selves here and there .It would be so nice to go to just one grocery store and find everything you want , instead of driving from shop to shop looking for the things you need to buy . Even the larger well stocked stores are never fully stocked with everything . This is so time consuming , grocery shopping . I hate it ! You go from shop to shop looking all over for that one thing you need . The prices have all gone up , and more and more you have to bag your own stuff , then haul it all to your car , go home and unpack it all .As if that wasn't enough , then I have to clean , wash, chop , slice , dice , divide it all up into individual bags , freeze it or store it , and ultimately ... cook the stuff !

I am sick of cooking three meals a day too !Every single day , imagine eating every day , all day long !Why can't Moe be considerate and only eat , oh say , every other day , once ? I mean if I were him , that's what I would do . Be considerate that's all I ask !The next time someone asks me what I do , I will answer ... COOK !

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Thought For The Day

I have thought about this for sometime and have come to the conclusion that when a child is born every parent should be given a Guide / Hand Book and/or a Owners Manuel so they will know the correct way to handle any and all situations as they come up .That all parents should be issued a life time supply of Valium or Prozac , which ever works best for them , so they can survive the trauma of raising children !

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Banking and Phones

I haven't been in a real chatty Cathy mood this last month , so much so, that I have people calling or writing me, asking if anything is wrong . I guess that means I must talk a lot normally or something . Nothing is wrong I just didn't feel the need to do a lot of talking that's all . It could happen .

I do all the banking in our family which means I go to the bank to make the deposits or withdraws .I always find going to the bank a interesting adventure . First you have to find a place to park the car . This entails many times circling the block looking for a parking spot while trying not to get killed . After I have managed to accomplish that feat , I usually have to cross a very busy street to get to the bank . This can be VERY tricky . It is a matter of timing like a dance .

Our bank is housed in a building that was not originally designed to be a bank . So there are some very strange alterations in the building. It has crooks and cranes that you wouldn't normally see in a bank .Things aren't in the expected places and it has a back door which I find weird . Say you need to talk to the bank manager , you have to out the banks front door , walk around to the back door , knock on the door and say a magic pass word to some person on the other side of the door .They will then open the door for you . I am sure they change the password every five minutes . Now isn't that weird ?

Once inside the bank I always say hello to the guards at the door . I figure this is just good manners and also possible future insurance in case of … well , whatever , right ? When I first started going to the bank it was pretty dirty inside , especially for a bank . But then again this is Libya and some things are different here . The windows were so dirty , you couldn't see whether it was sunny or cloudy outside. The teller windows were made of glass that hadn't seen soap or water in maybe a hundred years . When talking to the teller , they were unable to hear what you said … because there wasn't a speakers opening in the glass for the sound to travel through . The counters were chipped Formica , which isn't exactly bank décor and you could never find a pen to sign your documents with when you needed one . So frustrating !!! They had sad tired old style Venation blinds hanging at very odd angles from the windows that made me think of a old black and white movie from the 1940's

This all started to change this last winter . I would walked into the bank to find that they had cleaned the windows . So much light poured into the lobby it was almost blinding . Then another time I walked into the bank and had a serious shock . The pushing shoving throngs of people were missing . Everyone was sitting down calmly , silently waiting for some thing to happen . What it was , I wasn't too sure of , but then as I stood looking , I noticed a new machine just inside the main door . It was a number issuer machine . You were to take a number when you came in and then wait for your number to be called . I didn't know what amazed me the most , the modern machine with numbers , or the fact that the people were doing what they were supposed to in a well behaved manner . The next time I went to the bank , the teller windows were gone completely . The glass torn down , the space opened up and new counter tops gleamed back at you . They posted the Stock Exchange rates from around the world on a monitor for viewing , along side currency exchange rates .Wowow !!! A real bank was evolving here before my very eyes . Yesterday the tired dirty Venation blinds had been replaced by very tasteful shades that hang vertically in sleek splendor . And …… the floor had actually been mopped !!!! What next I ask myself ?

I think those of you that are readers of my blog might remember me mentioning the phone troubles we have had starting this past September . First it was static and clicking on the line so loudly that you couldn't have a conversation at all . Then the neighbor across the street manage to have their phone wires crossed with ours some how so that when ever they dialed a out going number , it rang in our house as well . Imagine 2 a.m. the phone ringing , waking you up from sound sleep , running to answer the phone with your heart in your mouth , thinking the worst might have happened to a love one , only to hear a series of clicks and beeps of a phone being dialed . This got old fast . We talked to the phone company so many times I have my own chair there . We talked to the neighbor . We complained to the phone company . We begged the phone company and once forced a line repair man to come into the building to check the lines before our very eyes . Each and every time we were assured that all was being done to correct the situation and all would be well … SOON ! Never happened !

Last month it was time to pay the bill , so I did that and all was OK . Oh , we still had the clicks , swishes , crackles , the humming , and the midnight hour phone calls , but at least when we plugged the phone in , it worked , sorta . Things were so bad that we mainly kept the phone unplugged to be free from the unwanted phone calls by the neighbor . This frustrates all our family and friends who take our phone not being plugged in very personally , but what to do , eh ? I am constantly being accused of being anti social . Moi !

Two weeks ago we had a new development , we could no longer dial mobile / cell numbers on our land line . There was some recording from Fatima Omar telling us we had to recharge our card . What card is she talking about ? What next Fatima ??? I took this personally , very . I felt as if I was being signaled out by the phone company for some sort of harassment or something . I hadn't heard of anyone else with this problem . Moe and I went to the phone company once AGAIN , this time to ask what Fatima was going on about a card to use our phone when it was a land line and not a mobile phone that uses cards . I mean we had paid our bill on time and didn't owe money .

The people at the phone company hadn't a clue at all as to what Moe and I were going on about . What Fatima Omar recording they asked . The one on our phone that says we need a card . Hum ? Of course you don't need a card for a land line they said assuredly .Maybe you owe on you phone bill ? No , I said here is my receipt of payment from last month . And so it went for two weeks , back and worth . Then , Eureka ! Some one said we had to go to the Post Office to buy a card that would enable us to make calls to mobile numbers once again from our land line . Oh Happy Days !!! It was a new system .

OK ! So , I did that . Went to the Post Office . Talked to a guy , asked all sorts of questions and he assures me that all I need is this card and all will be good once again in phone land . I could have a cheap one , where the money will run out fast , or a more expensive one that will last longer , or a subscription with a monthly charge . My thinking was to go with a expensive one to see how long it last , rather than a cheap one where I have to run back and worth every few days to buy a new card , like I see people with mobile phones doing . As for the subscription , well I already have that with the phone company , so why make life so complicated ? Long story short , two days AFTER I buy the card and use it for five minutes , really , the time is up .

This means another trip to the Post Office for more questions and few answers . This time I make Moe go with me . Now we get somewhere . The card I bought paid the phone account up to date , since the phone bills are always three months behind , but in this case , five . I didn't know that . No one at the phone company told us that ! Then secondly , we will no longer go to the phone company to pay our bill , but rather we will go to the Post Office to buy a phone card instead and pay as we go , or call as the case maybe . All this , and we still have the crackles , hissing , swishing , humming , and the midnight hour phone calls from the neighbors . Can things get any easier ? I am waiting for the bells to start any day now.

There is some good news , my grandson celebrated his first birthday last week .My oldest daughter discovered that she is two and a half months pregnant . We are all so excited over that news !!!! My youngest daughter is due to have her first baby in a couple of months . She had a scare this last week , but all is well now , AlHumdullallah ! Moe and I are rubbing along like two peas in a pod . Hope all is well with you and your loved ones too .

Friday, May 23, 2008

Celebrating Women

A Friend sent this video to me . It celebrates over 500 years of women in paintings . SO lovely ! Thought you might like to see the video as well . How beautiful the women are , their spirits shine from the paintings .Enjoy !There is music too , so turn up your speakers .

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Equal Rights

You know how some religions allow men to have multiplies of spouses and/or mates , such as concubines and wives ? Well , after long and hard debating among my selves , I have decided that women are long over due for some much needed equal rights !Yes , that's what I said , equal rights .

For millennium now , men have had all the fun of multiple mates to fulfill their every need , while the women of the world suffer trying to get the man to just take out the trash . If there was more than one man around the house , no one would feel the need to ignore the woman's request to take out the trash , right ? There would be alternate men to to take out the trash on alternate nights . See how well that works in the mens favor ? And ..... the woman would no longer be a nag , therefore making her more of a happier mate to have and be around . I pronounce this as a win win situation for all !So , who will be the first one to be a trend setter and get this ball a rolling ?

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Libya Wants Medical Equipment From Brazil

Here is a exert from Arab-Brazilian News Agency :

" The Libyan businessmen also spoke about the Ministry of Health's budget for this year, US$ 800 million, to include the redoing of hospitals and state-owned medical clinics."

$800,000,000 .00 can buy a whole lot of stuff .Hope it happens .For the complete story click here .

In a related article , there is talk of a new ring road to encircle the city of Tripoli ,also another "new" airport .Read all about that here . Looks like things are a foot , eh what Watson ?

Monday, May 12, 2008

A Special Mother's Day Post

I was reading UT's blog post on Mother's Day and she referred back to her post for Libya's Mother's Day and her trip to the main hospital, Tripoli Medical Center (TMC)this past March . She went to the infectious disease department where AIDS ,Hepatitis , and other contagious diseases are treated . Here is the exert from her post . I found it to be very enlighting and informative .Thanks UT for such a great report .For the full blog post click here for the link .

" Another visit to TMC (part 1)

Last year if any of you recall I visited the Cancer stricken children for the Children’s and Mother’s Day and Id promised myself that Id find a way to visit the HIV and Hepatitis Band C children, and am happy to say that my prayers were answered. Some family members and friends asked me time and again why I do this. They think it’s to promote our center, to which I respond that I want to go to bed every night believing that I made a child happy and showed him/her that a complete stranger had cared enough to hopefully have put a smile on his or her face! And if it weren’t for our center I wouldn’t have the funds to help. Many give to The Cancer stricken children, but the children who are virus affected are not given the same attention. They are at the end of the day, children, who didn’t ask to be born or infected, and deserve the best.

Through my daughter’s friend I met two lovely ladies, a doctor whose name is Suher and a nurse Soumeya. Both of these ladies would make any Libyan proud of this medical team for they both work at the same hospital, something which is always appreciated in any field at any given time, and rarely seen in the everyday management in our country…

Anyways this time I am to tell you of my encounter, which was if I may say, of a very friendly one, for the ladies really made me feel at home in an environment which is incomparable to any home of any sort. This is the Infectious Department at the Tripoli Medical Center (TMC). I was afraid at first, needless to say why ….. But the doctor reassured me stating there was no concern to be, as I wasn’t visiting the wards or the patients which would be for the next visit, and most of the doctors weren’t wearing masks, an observation which got my attention as I too wasn’t asked to wear one. I am never a fidgety person especially where sick people are concerned for I never want to make them feel uncomfortable since what they are going through is more than enough. Here as always I forget myself and think of others first, another of my weaknesses.

We discussed so many topics concerning our beloved people’s lack of awareness in our country. Dr Suher which is indeed a bright , and dedicated person working in a place where lack of awareness is home , continuing to strive and find ways to treat their patients through other clinics as the patients are at high risk of infecting others and many doctors, in other clinics will not take them in, still she remains optimistic. So a solution was made that of having collaboration with other departments at TMC to treat the patients when a new complaint was called upon.

Nursing was also another topic discussed, again here we the same problem that arises that of nurses being seen as mere cleaning ladies and not respected for their hard and demanding work. This I commented on as it’s not a complaint we face in Libya only but in the entire Arab world. A nurse is seen and looked down upon whereas a doctor is of a better standard professionally speaking.. Little do our people know that these professionals have to work hand in hand as a team to compliment one another, thus achieving success, or as is as said in our traditional way “one cannot clap with one hand,” i.e. you need two hands to clap!

Where the patients concerned are stricken with any of the above mentioned viruses, for some even leave their relatives never to come back to them till informed of their death.. The doctors keep telling them time and again of the transmission of the illness and how the shaking of hands a hug or kiss wont transmit the illness , something which these patients are in great need of, yet alas nothing is done leaving them living a phobia that has no real need resulting in depressed patients.

The people suffering from the illnesses get treated at the out patient clinic from Saturdays to Wednesdays and a 24 hour doctor is always available on call. The medical assistance and medicines are all free of charge, but the patients have to be registered and filed first. The Clinic also provides orientation and awareness programmes explaining to the patients and their (if any) interested family members, how the diseases are transmitted, thus taking the pre cautionary measures required.

Some families are so ashamed of their sick family member that its so devastating to the ill person, something they could do without. Others live in denial. Others still who are of middle class or higher would keep it a secret and travel abroad to get treatment. We have the treatment and the best is available, if only our people would open up and not live in denial, by coming to terms with these sick people for they are sick as any sick person can be and more. The cancer stricken are more respected and seen as a wish from Allah whereas those hit with the viruses are seen and accused of sinful doings, which is in most cases no wrong doings of theirs ,sigh !"

Photos will follow asap

Posted by UT at 10:26 AM

Labels: children day in Libya, doctors, Libyan Doctors TMC, Mothers Day

Sunday, May 11, 2008

This And That

I would like to wish all mothers everywhere a Happy Mother's Day . It is Mother's day in America today. I think mothers all over the world deserve a special day today , whether or not they are in America , or Americans . Most countries have their own Mothers Day celebrations, but hey , you can NEVER tell your mom enough just how much she means to you , how you appreciate all the things she does for you and the family , right ?

Moe and I went grocery shopping the other day and I was astounded how much the price of everything has gone up ! Almost twice the average price and it is not even Ramadan !!!!We ended up paying double what our normal list of things cost us in the past .Guess we will have to start to grow our own veggies soon if this keeps up .Maybe get a cow and some chickens too ? I will be the Old Mac Donald farmer , like in the children's song before long , lol .

Today I went to Sheila to have the works .I look marvelous darlink !!!! My hair was cut and styled .I had streaks of red mixed in with the blond for fun .My toe nails are a lush pink that gives me pleasure when ever I look down upon them . My brows look like dove wings gently arched .My skin is satiny smooth from her message .Oh , Sheila , we will never let you leave us for so long again . Who else will pampers us so divinely ?

Yesterday I spent sometime with a friend that I NEVER get to see, or hardly talk to any more since she started her own business several years ago . She is always busy with her larger family or her business .It is a rare day for her to have spare time to just spend on her self .That's what made yesterday so wonderful for me , knowing that we shared that time together having so much fun . We went for a ride into the country side we both love .Then we went by to see The Wall on our land , lol . After that, we bought some sinful goodies to take to the Condo On The Sea where we had an old fashion talk-a- thong while we ate our goodies .Really a wonderful time with a great friend .It can't get better than that !Last night my daughters called to wish me a Happy Mothers day from America and completed my day !

On some of the Arabic TV channels here there is a commercial for AXE deodorant that has a English teacher teaching adults English . She is showing them pictures of different things and saying the words for them ; like cat , cow, and one is of a dog. A cute guy walks into her class and she says " Boom Chicka WOW WOW ".Her students all repeat what she says . It is so funny . Now in stores here when ever anyone wants to buy the deodorant , they don't ask for it by it's name , they ask for that" boom chicka wow wow " spray , lol ! My friend that is a English teacher says that other countries have a different version of that same phrase on their commercials too . Here is the commercial for you to watch too .Check out some of the other ones as well. Boom chicka wow wow y'all !

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Now You See It , Now You Don't

I had a surprise today . I drove over to visit my friend and got lost . She only lives two streets over from me . I have been to her house so many times I could draw a map in my sleep to her house, but today I got lost . WHY ???? Her sister in laws house across the street from hers was torn down yesterday .That meant the whole face of her street looked so different that it was unrecognizable . First thing , the house that was in the middle of the street, was gone now . Second the palm trees were all gone . The pile of rubble was so high that I didn't even notice my friends house as I drove by .I was busy wondering what had happened to the neighborhood .I noticed I had passed up my turn off when I came to the end of the street .I turned around and looked closely this time .Imagine my surprise when I discovered what had happened . I had driven by there two days ago and all was normal .

I had some errands to run in another part of the City today also .This time I am driving down a street I use almost every other day . I notice a gap in the shops on my right hand side of the street .Two days ago there had been shops there , now there was nothing . A new street in the making .Amazing ! Just like that a new road . Wonder if they will ever get around to naming the streets here . A few streets have names and in certain area's you will even see street signs on the sides of buildings .But mostly you go by land marks here when giving instructions to people coming to your home or places of interest .Now all the land marks are gone , what will we do ? Tell people to go to the 3rd pot hole in the long and wending road by the white multi storied building with gold windows ? Tee hee !

Once some of the American women were met by people of the US government here in Libya. They wanted our home addresses in case of a emergency to contact us .Imagine our amusement when faced with that request . Then we were asked to draw a map to our homes . That was a even more difficult request to fulfill than the addresses . LOL !!I don't think many of us complied with those request because of the impossibility of it all . Maybe once all these new roads are built , named, and a city map is drawn up we will be able to comply , but until then ..... you go down the long road with the big hole in it , turn left at the crocked tree , go 2 kilometers down that road , take a sharp turn right at the wall that has collapsed ...... Can't wait to see you there , LOL !

Sunday, May 4, 2008


If Only

If only he had listened………

If only there had been rehab………….

If only there had been counseling ……….

If only there had been treatment ………

If only there had been help …………

If only there had been hope ………….

If only there had been some other way ………….

If only so many more things ………….

If only, if only, if only, if ………..

If only my son were alive today ……….

If only there never was a disease named AIDS .