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Monday, September 23, 2013

Spinning Ninjas

If you've never lived in a Muslim country, you might not be familiar with the many different levels of veiling that can occur.  The most extreme being where the woman is completely covered in black (we're talking eyes, gloves, everything).  

As an expat and non Muslim living in Egypt, this is a bit shocking at first, I mean how do they see, drive, talk, eat, live their lives?  But like everything else in life, you get used to it over time, and we've affectionately dubbed these women as "ninjas".  The term is not meant to give offense, it's simply referring to the fact that you can see absolutely nothing of their bodies, like a ninja.

While taking a short weekend break at the Red Sea last week, there were two women who came to the pool everyday in a swim version of the ninja suit, complete with sunglasses and baseball hats that matched.  And I couldn't help but giggle as this happened right in front of me one day.  Spinning Ninja!

video


We had a great time at the Red Sea.  Quincy got to swim in the ocean for the first time, which he seemed to enjoy, just like all other forms of water.  This kid is definitely a water baby.  The fresh breeze and sounds of the water lulled him to sleep easily, making for very happy parents.









School started two weeks late due to the curfew that's been in effect for the last month.  An odd reason to start school late, but at the same time, we've gotten so used to zany things happening here that it hasn't really affected us much.  Except when we head out on Fridays after 6pm and are left scratching our heads because all the restaurants are already closed.  Oh yeah, it's early curfew tonight, better head home and make some macaroni and cheese!  It's a weird combination of feeling like a teenager with a 6 year old's curfew time.

Knowing that this is our last year in Cairo has made things a bit easier.  There's been a growing stress from living in this city for the last 3 years.  Part of it is the craziness that is Cairo, part of it is the fact that we chose a rather difficult time in Egypt's history to be visitors.  And another equally large part is just the fact that Ryan and I are not big city people.  We like mountains, and water and for things to be a bit more quiet and calm.  Unfortunately there's not a lot of that to be found in this bustling place.

So with the decision to look for jobs somewhere else next year has come a feeling of peace.  I'd compare it to the first year here, with less excitement about all the stuff going on around us, but more appreciation for all the quirks Cairo has to offer.  Like our last trip to one of the major supermarkets in City Stars a few weeks ago, where half the shelves were empty and yellow signs hung everywhere, which we finally took the time to read.  Interesting... 






Or the random things you see driving down the road on any given day.






In other news, Q is thriving.  He's three 1/2 months old and has achieved a triumvirate of accomplishments.  Sleeping through the night, rolling over and blowing spit bubbles.  I'm pretty sure the spit bubbles are his favorite part so far.




We call this his Wilt Chamberlain look.  Bringing back the 60's!


Yeah mom, I like ice cream, that's for me right!


We enjoyed a visit from our friend Joseph, and Q got some snuggle time as well as a nice gift from Mariska, a stuffed giraffe that plays lullabies.


He's a pretty happy little guy, but especially when he's in daddy's arms.

It's been interesting having him at school with us, but overall I think it's a real blessing.  I'm able to continue nursing him throughout the day and we both get a chance to see him every once and awhile, which not everyone is lucky enough to be able to do with their baby.  He's very popular, and I'm frequently relieved of mommy duties and told to go away so other people can steal my baby.  It's a pretty sweet arrangement for all of us, even Nick enjoys playing with the kids toys after school.





Life at home has fallen into a pretty predictable pattern of story, bath, boob and then bed.  








We've even created a little play area for Q in the living room.  He doesn't do much with it yet, but we think it will get a lot more use in the next few months.





He's also got his own room now.  Big boy sleeps on his own, which was a little weird for us at first, but also a godsend.  It's so nice not to have to tiptoe to the bathroom in the middle of the night anymore.




All in all, life is pretty fantastic at the moment.  We're happy, healthy, looking forward to our next adventure and have this amazing baby in our lives, who brightens every day with his smiles, squeals and constantly changing personality.  We're busier than ever, and sometimes I feel like a bit of a spinning ninja myself, but I wouldn't have it any other way.





This is what happens when babies are left with daddies for too long unattended.