We've been here for four weeks already. That's one month down, 35 to go.
We haven't yet done or seen a lot, for several reasons: we still have no car, so touring isn't easy. Because of Ramadan, nothing's open, and you can't eat or drink in public, making even half-day trips out of the question. And finally, it's been hot!
Those problems are fading, slowly, because: rumor has it the car and HHE will be delivered any day now. As in, the Embassy asked for our cell phone numbers so the movers could call us if they decide to show up tomorrow or Sunday. Cross your fingers, people. Also, Ramadan is drawing to a close - next week it finishes off with the three-day Eid al Fitr celebration. We might actually get to sample a restaurant or two in the coming weeks. And finally, it isn't hot anymore. The first two weeks here we had a knock-the-power-out heatwave - one day it even hit 109 degrees. But this weekend the highs have only been in the high 80s, and with no humidity, that feels like heaven. In fact, we went to dinner at the Embassy pool last night, and I was shivering in my jeans and t-shirt.
Let's see, what else? Bart has had a crazy week at work. It was one of those weeks that can't be blogged about, but oh, if it could... We didn't see much of him at all. We've started discussions with the boys about emergency preparedness, to include: duck-and-cover drills at the Embassy, how to contact the Marines for help, what to do if intruders enter the house or school. Not fun stuff, but the conversations need to happen.
In other news, I interviewed my first nanny candidate this morning. I'm a terrible interviewer, because I spend so much time trying to make sure the other person is comfortable that I basically forget to ask them anything substantive. Still, this lady seemed very nice and competent, and she came with terrific references, going back ten years. So we'll see. I have two more interviews this week.
I hate doing this. I hate knowing that every person I see needs a job. In some cases, if they don't find a job, they have to leave the country. So they're desperate, and it shows. Once I do choose a candidate, I'll have to negotiate salary and hours, which I also hate. I hate it all. But not as much as I hate ironing and folding laundry. I really want to get some help in here so I can leave the girls and take an Arabic class, or go to the gym - I haven't been since we were in Seattle, and it's starting to show.
Hopefully by weeks' end I'll have a car, a house full of boxes and a nanny. That's the goal.
Oh, and did I mention Aidan's birthday is this week? I have to figure out how to bake 2 dozen cupcakes (without a cupcake tin) and deliver them to the school on Monday (via taxi with girls in tow, unless aforementioned car arrives by then). Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday are school holidays. So's next Sunday. And maybe Monday, too - it depends upon when the official Eid holiday happens, and apparently there's no way to know without going out and looking at the moon. Kind of reminds me of Groundhog Day.
But I digress. Aidan wants to invite zillions of kids to his birthday party. What party, you ask? Or at least, that's what I asked. We had planned to invite a couple of families and make pizza. But now he wants to hold it at an indoor playground. And he wants to invite Justin ("What's his last name, honey?" "I don't know." "What's his phone number?" "I don't know." "How about his address?" "Ummm...."), plus a zillion other kids whom he's just met, and whom I don't know. And he wants takeout pizza, but where does one get such a thing? And of course we have no gift bags. We have no plates. We lack invitations and balloons, along with any ability to plan children's parties under the best of circumstances. I'm trying to figure out how to weasel my way out of this one.
So. To summarize: HHE, car shipment, nanny interviews, cupcakes to school, birthday party. Oh, and Kyra goes to meet her teacher at her new school this week. And Shay has a doctor's appointment.
It's nice in a way, those first few weeks at post, when you have no friends and no car, so no plans need to be juggled. But it looks as though I'm entering the juggling phase this week, with a vengeance.
Wish me luck...