Saturday, November 12, 2005

The Sickie Slumber Party

The Bird Flu may be preparing its attack on humanity, but here at Momma's house, the Hamster Flu has already struck. Hubby got sick with bronchitis, but he had his tickets so he flew off to Pakistan anyway. The next morning the visiting Mrs Abez, Owl and myself all woke up with the flu. We've been coughing, over-medicating and commiserating together for the past 4 days. Mrs. Abez is deemed too contagious to travel home and her in-laws are recuperating themselves so we have had her for a few more days.

I can't say it's not been fun. With our Abez back, it's been like a reunion of sorts. We tell funny stories and laugh until we go into coughing spasms. There's always a person willing to jump into the waterbed and join me for a group nap. Whenever anyone asks for ice cream there's always someone to second the notion and one person feeling the least sick at that moment to go out and get it.

Having three sick people in the house at the same time is like having three prima ballerinas in the same small dance troupe. Trying to get our over the counter medications has thoroughly confused our pharmacist; Mrs. Abez is expecting and can only take medications safe for her situation, Owl is asthmatic and needs syrups that will make her cough but not give her a coughing spasm. I hate all syrups and want my medicines in pill form only. We each want different juices, apple of Owl, cran-apple for Abez and orange-carrot for me. We each want different little treats that will perk us up. I brought home a can of jalapeno Pringles because sick people need excitement in their lives and the peppers are great for clearing the sinuses. Abez brought home some chocolate/coconut wafer cookies, and Owl contributed with blueberry Danish.

It's been like a girlie sleep over party with junk food and flu medicine. Today, I think we should all give each other manicures and facials.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Help... I'm turning into an ARAB!!!

Help... Someone call the American Embassy and have me rescued by the US Marines...I'm turning into an ARAB!!! Although not a bad thing, it shocked me that it was happening so quickly!

I just did my third visa run to Oman this week so that means I've been in the UAE for 6 months. How could it happen so quickly?

The first step towards my arabization began only a few days after I arrived here. I began drinking Luban UP. (Warning sign #1) Luban Up is salty yogurt drink that comes in a little blue paper carton. Everyone here drinks it from the Sheiks to school children to the humblest unskilled laborers. I tried it and found it to be like a salty, instant version of Lassi (South Asia's version of yogurt milkshake) made and enjoyed by my family. I tried to convince my family of its merits and familiar taste, but they refuse.

This morning while alone in the apartment and blog surfing in my pj's I paused long enough to step into the kitchen to get a box of Luban Up. I shook it and opened it, remembering how just last night I made a special late-night trip to the grocery store to restock my dwindling supply. (Warning sign #2)

A few minutes later, my rumbling tummy told me that my hunger-monster had awakened and was demanding breakfast. I found myself staring into the opened fridge. Not much there. I spotted some hamburger buns and remembered some herb flavored cream cheese hiding in fridge netherlands. I sliced open the bun and spread a modest amount of cream cheese, fully intending to close the bun and walk away… but the hunger-monster growled his disapproval so I spread a thick layer on the top half and took a hasty bite. Ummmmm!

With my cream cheese sandwich in one hand and my glass of Luban Up in the other I walked towards the computer. "This is what the cream cheese commercials on the TV always show as a typical Arab breakfast. I always thought a cream cheese sandwich for breakfast was rather unhealthy and gross but it is tasty." (Warning sign #3) It was then that the full picture of my situation struck me. I looked down at myself and realized the full situation: cream cheese sandwich in one hand, Luban Up in the other, and wearing a caftan (Warning sign #4)... OHMYGOSH! I've turned into an Arab!

I enjoy well made shawarma and I adore backlava. I've already begun to like Zaather, mutton and hummos. What will happen next... will I begin writing right to left, wearing toxic amounts of designer perfume or smoking hookah??? Stay tuned as I chronicle the process. Only time will tell.

Carol of Arabia, signing out.