Monday, July 02, 2012
2 July: Jordanian fencing
2 July Is it possible that I've complained about the strict car seat laws in America? Never again. I cannot wait to strap those little bodies safely into cars seats--away from door handles, each other, and me! I am feeling particularly weary of transport by taxi this afternoon after the long trip to and from the wonderful Children's Museum. I love that place. Today's trip was tinged a bit by some resistance and a lot of complaining by Yumi, but I am proud of her for not launching into a full-scale fit over the fact that she left the "map" she drew of our route to the museum up in the room. I did not allow us to go back to get it because of course I had already reminded her not to forget it. And it was already 11am (didn't I say I'd skip Aya's morning nap on museum days? Well, I forgot.). So I was a "meanie" and would not go back to get it. Yumi was mad but, as I said, stopped short of hysterics. I am proud of myself, too; she put me on edge AND our only waterbottle broke while out on the curb trying to catch a cab (thanks, Aya). I prayed I would not snap and I did not. We arrived at the museum in reasonably good moods and had an enjoyable time. Poor Aya got her hand stepped on, though, and a nail was ripped off. She was very brave. I did not get much of a chance this time to visit with museum staffers as the girls literally ripped from one place to another. I wish they would not do this but I do want them to able to move and rub and play. There were a LOT of kids there today. We kept bumping into a few "older" girls who took a liking to Yumi and kept including her in their play. Good. She needs that. Yumi also spent some time with a museum staffer named Salim at the weather and climate wagon. I am so proud of her Arabic ability. She can really communicate--even about the seasons. Emi kept going back to the rowing skeleton. She loves that exhibit! Today they discovered some new ones including the room on light and mirrors. I learned the words for "distorted" and "kaleidoscope." The ride home, was, as I hinted, less than enjoyable. I had snacks but just not enough. Everyone was climbing all over me and getting cranky with each other. As we neared our hotel, Emi cried out the name of our beloved Syrian cook and hotel employee--Mohaned. I assumed she saw someone resembling him and turned two look. That smart Emi--it WAS Mohaned. We invited him to hop in but he declined. He seemed pleased to see us. Quiet time began late, so Emi slept late. She woke around 4:45pm when Aya pushed open the door to the master bedroom-where she takes her quiet time. We got everyone ready to go and packed a picnic dinner of a leftover shawarma, hummus, pita, veggies, and fruit. Nate had been tasked with buying and bringing some peanut butter from a store near his school...yes, I broke down and got them peanut butter...sigh. I brought our one table knife with the intention of making some pita and peanut butter sandwiches. We met Nate on the main road and crossed the four lanes of speeding traffic without only minor heart palpitations. Poor Nate--he feels like he is getting sick. But he hung in there and we walked over to "Sports City" to investigate a new stroller-friendly path he found into the gym and pool area. I am still toying with the idea of getting Yumi enrolled into a camp and possibly taking Emi and Aya to the pool and playground while Yumi is otherwise occupied. While on our way, we paused by the fencing school. I have never watched fencing in person before. It was enjoyable and Yumi seemed particularly fascinated. New word--fencing. We watched a class in session packed with young Jordanian boys and girls of all ages. Remarkable. We arrived at the main gym building. The pool is non-accessible by stroller via the usual entrance so we searched for a stroller-friendly path to the pool--a path at involves entering the loading dock and walking through in dimly-lit corridor coved in a centimeter of water. Accomplishing that, we parked ourselves on a curb next to the fairly decent playground (sandy BUT covered with many large umbrellas) and began to eat (Nate, Aya and I) and play (Yumi and Emi). A very nice older girl played with them and I chatted briefly with her mother. Overall, a pleasant evening. We walked back to the hotel and let Yumi/Nate get an icecream reward for Yumi while I took Emi/Aya back to the room to process for bed. Family prayer, scripture reading, stories, Yumi massage--I guess it can't get any better than that! Finally--two things: 1) Sorry for the typos! I do not proof read so there are surely many typos and/or autocorrect weirdnesses. Nate reads my posts later and points then out. Whoops! 2) In case you did not know, I post pictures on FB so find me there to get an image of the places/people about which I am writing.