Saturday, July 07, 2012
7 July: The "best" shawarma in Amman
7 July Internet, at last! I hope. It is patchy. I must have reminded/complained to/nagged/cajoled/threatened (nicely) the staff here a dozen times. I am actually mortified at how much I rely on Internet connectivity. Even only two times a day, really--nap time and for a bit after the girls go to bed. I went off on an adventure today while the girls rested and Nate held down the fort, so I did not write up my first half of day already. Considering it is currently 10:30pm and I am just beginning, there will be no "opus" today. Just a quick rundown on events and attitudes of the day. -Average, if a bit irritating, pre-breakfast period. I had to threaten Yumi with a haircut to get her to let me comb her hair. That ALWAYS works although it does not stop the complaining. -Breakfast was tasty. Fuul. -Friends from church dropped off two bags of old toys for us to use. Yay! -Workout: Kenpo Cardio X, my favorite. -Yumi and Emi wake Aya from her morning nap with a screaming match. -Agonizingly slow departure but once on our way all went well. We visited Hakawati book store for their Saturday late morning storytime. -I love this bookstore and wish I could linger. Hard to do, though, when all three girls usually need attention all at once. This time was like every other; I tried to look for books while stopping every few minutes to read the halloween book (again) to Emi or to keep Aya from going outside or negotiate some interaction between Yumi and her sisters/other kids in the store. The storytime was packed but sadly my girls don't love it; they can't get interested in the stories read in Arabic and they can't understand the reader when she reads stories in English (neither can I, for that matter). Ah well. I am just glad they are seeing other kids from another world doing familiar things (listening to strories, for example). I want the girls to see the differences and similarities between their world and Jordan. I did get about five new books today. I want to buy the entire store. Yumi did a craft and everyone played on the playground a bit. They were definitely ready to leave when we took off around 12:45pm. -Lunch: Pita and cheese sandwiches, cucumbers, and plums. Our food stocks are low. -Once I got the girls down I called Nate, who was studying in the hotel basement/restaurant. He took over and I took off. -I went downtown via public transport and shopped for new dresses for me, Yumi, and Emi. I also bought a few tops to add to the THREE I brought with me. Three, I am not joking. When I travel, I drop all efforts at fashion. -After buying the girls' dresses I had buyer's remorse and went back to return them. No go. The owner would not even consider it and no pleas to his sense of duty to a mother of three or, eventually, indignation and argument would change his mind. I felt cheated. Ah well, the girls love the dresses and if I overpaid, it is not the end of the world. -Bought some baklava but I have to say that the baklava here is no where as good as the recipe my dear friend Rachel taught me and I make occasionally. Seriously. I can stop after one piece of Jordanian baklawa and usually wish I had not even had it. Calories that I didn't even enjoy that much. But Rachel's recipe? Forget it; I will eat the whole pan if left alone with it. The plate of baklawa I bought today? I had a piece and the rest is sitting in a cupboard. I think Nate feels the same way about it. Kind of a waste but I feel like while I am here I need to periodically buy it. Just because .. -We took the girls to a party sponsored by some center that offers English lessons and who knows what else. There were little games, races, magic shows, music, face painting. The girls had fun. I learned about it from a friend I made from the Hakawati storytime. -This party was located near a super famous shawarma stand Nate knew of. Thus, we headed on over there after leaving the festivities and bought several sandwiches. They WERE good, although not the best I've had. We took them back to the hotel and ate then in the basement restaurant in the company of our hotel chef Mohaned. We love him. And he ADORES Ayame. WHO IS WALKING! Yep, she is walking many steps now in a row and is option to stand/walk over crawl at least 50% of the time. It is easy to see how proud of herself she is. And we are too. What a cuteness. -As I said, our supplies were low so Nate took Emi to one store (Heba and Ahmed's which is up the road from the hotel) and I took Yumi/Aya over to the little commercial district not too far away. We purchased (all together) fruit, vegetables, water, yoghurt, milk, and oats. Yumi had been relatively great today so she deserved a treat. Since she had a cupcake at this party I was hesitate to get her icecream. Turns out that an offer of gum was received just as well! So she "chomped" on gum (her verb) the whole walk back. -Girls tired and a bit cranky. Got everyone to bed by 8:00pm. -Feeling good tonight. Yumi's attitude is on the upswing. I have to decide about Arabic camp but I think the decision has actually been made; Nate does not want/cannot take her and I don't think it is fair to cart Emi/Aya around in the back of taxis so Yumi can go. I think we will try the Sports City camps and may go over there tomorrow afternoon to get this week's schedule. Presumably Nate intends to start is revised "intensive" schedule that involves not coming back until right before the girls' bedtime. Of course, I have lots of experience with having the girls from dawn to dusk but I normally have a cadre of people with whom to spend the time/commiserate. Not so this time. I am afraid I am going to be lonely. I'll be back tomorrow with my report, inshallah.