Saturday, November 17, 2012

Have been home for about a month - sure is nice to be in my own bed and in my own place.  Still have lots of things that need to do - need to clean out more kitchen cupboards and spend some time cleaning out drawers and closets.  Also need to 'find' stuff. Having the place painted while I was gone was a great idea in on one hand - but on the other hand it was not so great as stuff has 'disappeared' and I have not really had the time or the inclination to get it all done.  

Things with Aymn have gotten a tad bit better.  He is certainly trying and he has made a big change - still lots of room for improvement and of course I am working on making a few changes that I need to do - although I am far from perfect.  I still lose my temper and get frustrated.  Not sure if I will ever be able to be perfect in that respect but I need to keep on working on it.

We made some progress on getting me my citizenship.  But of course there are the invariable hiccups.  We made one trip to Immigration here in Alex, then were sent to the courthouse here in Alex where we went, and then we were told we needed to go to Cairo.  So off to Cairo we headed and unfortunately the Ministry of Justice was closed the first day we went - after asking Aymn numerous time if they would be open because it was a Saturday - and he assured me they would be open - well guess what - they were not open.  But we went and spent a bit of time at Khan el Khalilee - where I got a couple of 'hats' for my dad.  Then we went to the Mall of Arabia where I got to do some shopping at Spinney's.  Ended up having a nice day.  Then back to Cairo on the Tuesday and we spent the day running around.  Got to the last place 15 minutes before they were to close and the woman we needed to see was not working any more.  One of the 'bosses' took pity on me - he was quite concerned to see this foreign woman just about in tears and he prevailed upon her to process the paperwork for us - and now we need to go back in two weeks to pick up the copy of our Egyptian marriage contrast .  Unfortunately Aymn is leaving today - so we will have to wait until he gets back - because there is no sense in my going to get it as we cannot move any further until he is back - as I cannot initiate the process at the Immigration office - that is up to Aymn.  And besides I doubt I would be able to find the place again.  But at least it has started.  What a lot of hassles.  But such is the bureaucracy here in Egypt.

Yesterday Shani FaceTimed me and I got to to see the boys - they are growing so quickly.  Lincoln is wearing a mitten on his right hand because he burned his hand.  They were visiting friends and the fireplace was on and Lincoln used the front of the fireplace to get himself up to walk - and got 2nd degree burns on the palm of his hand.  It is healing nicely.  Both boys are walking - Austin was walking before I left and Lincoln was just starting and he has improved greatly.  Miss them so much - they are so cute - and I really do miss seeing them regularly.  They will think grandma lives in the phone - which is fine - at least I hope they remember me and when I see them we will make up the time.

Weather here has been awesome.  Still too warm for me - but it is slowly cooling down.  Must admit I am not missing the snow and ice at all.

Am heading to Istanbul and Varna (Bulgaria) tomorrow - so am busy today getting ready to travel.  Getting the laundry done and packing as well.  Need to find a ride to the airport, as Aymn was going to take us, but he is leaving for Libya tonight as his scooter has arrived and he has to be there when it is unloaded so he is taking off this evening after spending the day in Cairo getting things done regarding his business.  Wish he had made the time to get the things done around the house that I wanted him to do.  Oh well.  Need to convert him to the DIN DIN club instead of the DIL DIL club which then turns into the TIT TIT club.  

Anyhow - a few pics of the boys before I left Canada.

 This is Austin.

 My buddy Lincoln.

 Austin eating pasta and tomato sauce.

Lincoln eating past and tomato sauce - not sure how much sauce actually makes it into their tummy.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

I am a very bad blogger.  Have not blogged for over a year and what a year it has been.  Working for Canada Post as a temporary letter carrier.  Spent five months in Egypt - my sister, Marian travelled home with me when I returned in December.  She spent five weeks with me - we did a lot of 'touring'.  Spent the first week cleaning the apartment - lesson has been learned.  Then we headed to Ain Sokhna to spend Christmas with my friend Margaret, her husband Mustafa and her fur kids. We of course had to have the obligatory dip in the water on Christmas day - was a beautiful day - water was a tad on the cool side - but not bad - once you went numb - no not nearly that bad.  After spending a great Christmas with good friends we were on our way again.  We headed to Cairo to fly to Luxor where we rented a flat from a woman I had 'met' online.  The flat was situated on the West Bank - across the Nile from all the tourist attractions.  Was a very pleasant place to be - the apartment was wonderful - not that we spent much time in it.  We were out and about touring.  We went on a hot air balloon ride and then took a Nile Cruise.  Unfortunately I was not expecting to be sitting dockside for 1.5 days before we left and I had not brought enough to do - but it was nice enough to spend some time catching a few rays.  Then we moved and were on our way to Aswan - was a wonderful trip - if I ever do it again I will certainly be better prepared.  We disembarked in Aswan and spent the day seeing some sights - definitely need more time to see more - but we saw enough.  We then went on the train back to Luxor - train trip was uneventful.  Marian left in mid January and I 'vegged'.  Did not much of anything - definitely needed the time to unwind - having worked for 7 months for Canada Post - spent 2 weeks with the boys when they got home from the hospital - and was generally very busy in Canada.  And the first month back home was hectic to say the least.  Then the last weekend of February my g/f Louise arrived from Australia.  She had lived in Egypt for over 18 yeas before her husband passed away and due to regulations in Australia she found herself moving back to Australia.  We were off and running shortly after she arrived.  I was introduced to taking the tram almost everywhere.  We had a lot of fun.  Her son, Thomas, joined us after a week and so I had a houseful.  But we still had a lot of fun - for the most part Thomas did his own thing and we did ours.  Went with Louise to get her eyes checked and had mine done as well - the opthamologist sent me for further testing due to the history of macular degeneration in our family.  He informed me that I have the beginning of macular degeneration before I went for the test.  One nice thing in Egypt - we went to see the opthamologist on Thursday evening and could have had the test done that evening - I passed - was already tired and stressed - so the appointment was made for Saturday - no waiting at all.  The remarks that the technician made on the diagnostic was that things were normal - another nice thing - the paperwork is mine to keep - so I have all the pics that were taken.  Have started taking Vision Essentials that my dad has been taking for a long time and seems to have stopped the progress of the age related degeneration - so I decided to start it.  I have an eye appointment in Fort McMurray on October 11, at which time the diagnosis will be confirmed or not - anxious to find out.  But of course have to go see my GP and get a referral - have an appointment with the GP on Oct. 4 and opted to make the appointment for the exam myself as my time is finite.

After Louise and Thomas left I had a little over a month before I left for Canada.  Had yet to see Aymn.  But did get to spend lots of time with family while I was there.  Hatem (Aymn's brother who lives in Libya) was visiting Mom for a couple of months - we had a couple of parties during that time - was fun to be with the family.  Aymn showed up 10 days before I was to leave - and things quickly fell apart - to the point that I told him I wanted a divorce - and even told his sisters.  I do not think he believed me.  One of my BIL came to see me and told me that no matter what my decision I would always be part of the family - nice to know.  I have a feeling one of his sisters had a chat with him - because once I arrived in Canada he has become very attentive.  Time will tell.  Will see if he can walk the talk he has been talking.  If not I will be moving on.

Arrived back in Canada on May 10 - in time to celebrate Mother's Day and my 'baby's' 30th birthday.  Where has the time gone.  It is so wonderful to see the growth in this man - sometimes hard to  believe he is a man - he will always be my baby.  But now he has two of his own.

Went to Creston and visited with my parents.  Was back to work on May 28.  And boy have things changed.  Our best supervisor passed away very unexpectedly - he was only 53 - way too young.  And two of the supervisors left.  The last one had been seconded to work on the restructure.  And we had a new Superintendent, along with three new supervisors - two of whom had been letter carriers and one who had worked in retail.  All young with a lot to learn.  The atmosphere was not at all 'fun'.  In 2010 and 2011 even though the work was hard - it was 'fun' - the people were fun.  Now not so much.  The restructure took effect on August 20 - and I opted to be unavailable for six months - finished out three days and had had enough.  Tired of being treated like a moron who did not know how to do her job.  Talked with Aymn and he talked with one of my BIL and I have a job in Egypt teaching.  So am going to head back and see how it goes.  If things do not work out I can come back and go back to work in Fort McMurray - and I am hoping against hope that it works out.  I know it will be slow going - so have accounted for that in my finances.  Will be leaving enough money in my bank here to pay for a return trip in 2014 - going back to spending a couple of months visiting.  Must admit I am looking forward to getting settled in my own place.  Sleeping in my own bed, cooking in my own kitchen, cleaning up my own mess. 

Am currently in Calgary 'nannying' 'my' boys.  Arrived in Calgary last Tuesday with the intent of staying a week and then heading to Creston and then back to Calgary for another visit and then back to Fort McMurray to look after Marian's cats and home while she travels to New Brunswick for a week, then back to Calgary and on my way to Egypt.  But last Thursday Shani received a call from her old employers asking if she could pinch hit for a couple of weeks while one of their executive assistants was off - so she asked if I would look after the boys - I said sure.  Just means my travel plans will be altered.  Shani is not sure if it will be for two or three weeks.  If it is for two weeks than I will head to Creston before I have to head back to Fort McMurray - if it is three weeks then I will head to Creston after house sitting in Fort McMurray.  I am getting anxious to get home.  And must admit the thought of missing all the snow does hold a certain appeal.

So other than that not much else is new.  Life continues on - I continue to plug along - and so it goes.

Awesome Austin

Luscious Lincoln

Austin making faces

Austin playing in the sprinkler

Lincoln going for a drink in the pool

Brothers leaning on each other

I will endeavour to be a better blogger.  Unfortunately, it will get quite boring after I leave Calgary as there will be no more pics of 'my' boys to post.  But will try to be better at keeping a journal of my life.  Nice to be able to look back and see what I have done, where I have been and what trouble I have gotten into and gotten out of.