Monday, March 24, 2008

run aways and the everdays....

Today while out driving along Budaiya Rd., I was about to go around one of the last roundabouts before Al Osra and who did my wondering eyes see??? Bali, the guy that ran away from my FILs employment! I'm not sure that he saw me... he looked in my direction and turned his head quickly, I thought, but I'm not for sure. I watched him and saw where he was headed.... for I've heard from the woman who works for us that his wife, the girl that worked for us, is working out there. We had been told that he was working in Gudabiaya (sp?), but now, after seeing him, I doubt that.

He was carrying a bag of what looked like groceries and a bundle of flowers. I'd bet they're working for expats, and was told that by our house woman. Me and hubby have decided to do a sting operation this coming Friday. I called him upon seeing Bali - even wanted to turn around and follow him - but was told not to do this. He'd more than likely run upon seeing me and who knows if I'd find out where he's at... and they could run again... so I didn't.

I figure he was coming out of the cold store there at the corner, so we've decided to go there on Friday, early... maybe around 11:15, since they always cook lunch close to noon, and, if we see him, will let him go into the cold store and then try to nab him. I'm sure if we got him, he'd more than likely give up on where he's living, that way we could potentially go and get his wife as well. I have no idea how the family will take it, but I think we have a legal right to get them and take them to the police.

While in California, I learned that Bali is suing my FIL for not giving him pay during the months after he ran away. I find this to be utterly ridiculous. Here he left, upon his own choosing, but expects my FIL to pay for all of those months. He also wants plane tickets to go back, which I know is our responsibility, but feel like we shouldn't have to do. I understand giving ppl rights, but how far does that have to go?


Naief is growing so much. He's now on the verge of walking. He took four steps the other night towards me, but has yet to do it again. I think he could probably do it if he wanted, but I have a feeling that he's still a little scared at this point. He has 14 teeth now. His fang teeth are coming in and, without a doubt, these have been the worst. He ran a fever, had cold symptoms, and was in a lot of pain. Poor little guy, his upper molars and these fang teeth have all been coming in together... I try to imagine what it must feel like, but it's hard. I just know that I hate tooth pain and never hesitate to give him pain meds if he's crying and pulling at his mouth a lot.

He is now riding in his car seat without any big issues. He'll cry here in Bahrain for me to take him out, but while in California, he was a real trooper. I'm glad that we had that opportunity there because it's the thing that got him truly used to it. I think it also helped to get him used to eating in his high chair. He's not crying any longer and has started eating or rather trying to eat with a spoon. He's quite messy - altho he doesn't rub the food all over his face or in his hair (yet) - so I feel pretty lucky. He does like to fling it on the floor, but I read that once they start doing that that it's time to stop eating.

He has also found his screaming voice. He loves to scream in public. Not scream or cry, just yell demands. ;) His usual yelling words are Ma Ma, Ma Ma. We were at Geant the other day and he decided to start doing this while going thru aisles. It embarrasses me somewhat and I'm trying not to let it - always remembering that anyone with children will understand what's happening - but that doesn't stop the stares at times. If they look at me, I just smile. I also read that when they do this - which is usually a phase - to try and play the whisper game. I did this last night and it helped a little, but sometimes he just loves to be the center of attention with all and won't stop until he's had his fill.

We cut his hair a week back. It was filled with curls and most ppl thought he was a girl, so we decided it was time. Didn't cut it too short or leave it too long, just a nice in between. It's cute. Sometimes I put cream in it and do the whole messy hair thing on the top.... it's precious really. He doesn't like it though and will sometimes take his hand and pull at it or cry if I'm spending too long.


Wilson, our cat, is getting along w/ all the cats. It's as though he never left. It took a bit for his sister, our black cat Petunia, to accept him. She'd hiss and growl at him and they may have even fought a little at first, but now she has allowed him back into her life. Maybe she was angry with him... but the other day in the kitchen she was bathing him and it was just so sweet. I'm giving the cats Bach drops in their water to help them all w/ this transition back into the home. I've used it in the past when taming feral cats and it always worked, so I hope that within a month or so, all the cats will be calmer because of his addition again into the family.


We're house sitting this cat for a woman I know. I don't really know her per say, but she used to work for my MIL at the school. She doesn't have any children so this cat, Jack, is like her baby. He's a beautiful white, long haired cat, but he hasn't been neutered. She's been asking for me to let him in the house, but I can't do it. If he feels threatened whatsoever, the likelihood of him spraying our house is high, and I don't wanna smell cat urine all over the place. She's also asked me to have him fixed for her and that she'll pay me in two months, but I'm just really torn with this.

Apparently she's married to a Bahraini man who is fooling around w/ this Moroccan woman and they have 6 kids. He keeps this woman, that I'm cat sitting for, in a flat someplace, but from what I've heard, he didn't pay her rent and she got kicked out. So she's now living w/ friends and looking for a new flat. The last time she came and visited, she hinted on the fact that if she doesn't find another flat, she'll have to get rid of Jack. I know she wants us to take him... I think this is one reason she's pushing the neutering issue... but hubby has given a firm no to this, and I'd rather not add another cat into our furr family. We're keeping him in one of our bathrooms right now and he just cries and such when I feed him and spend time with him - wanting out when I leave - but I just can't let him out in the house. This, in and of itself, makes me want to get him fixed... but if I do it and she doesn't pay, that's another "why did you do that, you knew she wouldn't pay" or "now she wants us to keep the cat... what do we say"... and the possibility of "oh the poor kitty... what if he doesn't find a home" going thru my mind and pretty much beating myself up mentally... so what to do?!!

For now I'm having the house woman clean the bathroom and hubby feed him so that I don't get attached. It's way too easy for my heart to go out and for me to wind up doing what I don't want to do.... and I have to listen to my husband this time.... you know?!! and I don't want another cat really, if the fact be known. We have our hands full now... and if Porsche does wind up coming back... well... you know what I mean.

okay... I'll run... good day my friends.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

a passing

The one thing that's hard to deal with, when you live far away from those you love, is death. Since living in Bahrain, I've missed the death of my uncle and the passing of my aunt, who died last night.

Isn't it sorta weird to think of it or say it as if you have missed the death... like I've missed out or something. This death marks the third in my mom's family. My mother is the oldest sister and it's very hard for her to see them passing away. They're all getting older, but I think it's probably hard when you're the oldest and the younger of your siblings are going first.

My mom didn't go to see her. She couldn't. She told me the other night that she'd rather remember her for the way she used to be, not like she was.... not knowing anyone around her, weighing only 61 lbs., her eyes having sunken into her skull, and as my cousin, her daughter, described it... she looked like a tiny werewolf.

When my mom told me this, all I could imagine was a tiny head with very short hair standing on end, pointed ears and fang teeth. My aunt didn't have fanged teeth... but I could imagine the rest of it.... and even dreamt of werewolves the night she told me this... the dream was so vivid and scary. I told Hashim the day after that it could be a movie, but after telling him what happened, he told me it was totally bizarre. Not sure if that was a good thing or a bad thing, but anyway.

I called my mom about a week back and found out about my aunt. I knew she had been sick, falling a lot and this last time, my cousin took her to the doctor.... they were looking at putting her in a nursing home (which I so disagree with), but I had no idea it had gotten so bad - neither had my mom. After they took her to the dr. this last time, when she fell, it was determined that she had colon cancer. It was terribly advanced and she never knew. They had been treating other things all along and obviously never checked for this... even though she had symptoms. It's a shame and is probably the insurance company's fault, if I'm truthful.

When I found out, it made me so terribly sad. Aunt Patti was the sweetest woman and I have so many fond memories of her when I was a young girl. I used to spend weekends w/ her sometimes... or can at least remember this one particular time. She was a beauty in her younger days and on this particular day, she and I would lay out in the sun. I wasn't a sun worshiper, but I never said a word, after all she had invited me, out of all of my cousins, to sunbathe with her.... or it could have been that she was babysitting.... ;) I don't remember that part of it, but I like to think that it was my teenager charm!

Well, she looked great in her bikini, and I can remember getting up several times throughout our hours in the sun that day to spray her off w/ the hose. I remember enjoying that day. I can also remember being at her house during the holidays and how funky I remember her being w/ her silver tree. She was the first person I had ever seen w/ a silver tree. It was so lavishly decorated... her whole house was, matter of fact. I'd walk around for hours looking at all her collectibles, especially bells, and playing in my adult cousins' rooms upstairs.

She was married to man named Bob who had false teeth in the front and when he'd take them out, he looked like Dracula. He'd frighten me terribly when I was a young girl... chasing me around the house while I screamed and begged him to stop. I'd try to find the best hiding place, but he'd always find me and act as though he'd suck the life blood from me.... I was terrified of him and, thinking about it now, realize that I truly hated him... and wonder if he didn't do this to me for menace... but I'll never know. She divorced him and she and I never discussed it.

I can remember my aunt coming to our house and allowing me to cut her hair... however I chose. There were several times that I cut it to her scalp - in places - and she never said a word... only laughed when my mom would say something. I thought for sure I was the next big stylist/hair cutter, never realizing how bad it actually was, but she never said a bad word about it and would praise me even. :) I'm sure it was all because she'd get a half hour massage or longer afterwards and she always enjoyed those immensely. She was a teacher at a beauty school, so cutting hair was her thing. She was the first to give me my first real "do". I was in the 10th grade and she feathered my hair. OMG... I loved it... altho it took a few good days to accept it.

After that, she cut my hair for years. When I think back, she was a great hair stylist. After she got older, she had a hard time teaching. She fell behind in knowledge and ability, and eventually was let go. This is when she started going down hill. It's sad to think about how ppl let their jobs become their life and when it's gone, they stop living. I think not working truly affected her, and I think, now, that she was probably sick back then. She started to lose her memory and I seriously thought she had gotten Alzheimer's, but whose to say. Maybe the cancer had spread to her brain and that, like the colon cancer, wasn't detected by the doctors.

Anyway.... I could write a very long post about this, but I'll end it now. I will definitely remember her fondly, think about her often and hope that she's with her sister and brother in Heaven. I wonder if she knows that I'm thinking about her and I hope she can feel it, see it, and know it. I feel sad about the fact that I haven't seen her in six years and that this Christmas I got a card from her thanking me for the Christmas card that I sent to her... knowing I didn't send out cards this year and knowing it was last year that I mailed the cards.... and sad that it wasn't but a month ago that I got the card from Hashim in California and talked to my mom about how her handwriting looked liked that of a 80 + year old woman and how sad that was....

She was cremated, by her daughters, and her ashes will be scattered in Madison some place.... I pray that it's beautiful that day and butterflies are flying around her ashes.... I hope to see you again my dear Aunt Pat.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Life and what's in it....

Funny how I lay in bed now, in the early morning or early evening, watching the trees bend with the wind, listening to the windchimes that I brought from the States (thinking about California - coz my sister has so many of them and they sound so beautiful when the wind blows), and I realize that Bahrain is now my home. One day I know we may go back to the States, but it won't be any time soon... and this time it feels okay. Even when we landed in Bahrain and left the airport, I usually have this feeling of sadness when I look at so many girls covered in black, but this time, I didn't.

This time, strangely enough, as I was waiting for Hashim to hail a cab/find transportation, several different girls came up and talked to Naief, kissed him and said hello. It was a nice welcoming and made me feel different...

I've heard other expats say this about having children here, but not until now did I have the experience - and there is something about it... something that welcomes you.

While I was in California, I found myself feeling like it was a bittersweet stay. My mom was sick and in bed for most of the time - not every waking hour, but more than I'm used to, and it was difficult. Difficult in that I don't like seeing her ill, weak and getting older - but it's a fact of life. And she's become quite crabby in her old age. She gets mad easily and then pouts heavily if you hurt her feelings or make her mad and such. It's true when they say that older ppl tend to become like children again because I see her doing that at times. And sister... this isn't a blog for mother to read! nor to share... so if you're reading this, keep it to yourself please.

I don't argue w/ my mom any more. I just refuse to, no matter how mad she makes me or if she says something that bothers me... I just see her and can't. I see no reason in upsetting her, altho I know I do at times, but nowadays, I'd never do it intentionally. I tell my sister not to argue w/ her, but I think it's harder for one when they live w/ that person and see it and live w/ a variety of stresses daily, and it's easier for me to come in and say something or tell her to do this or do that because I'm not living with it... but when I see the two of them and if there's tension between them.. I think back to when I was younger and more argumentative w/ her and try to see my sister's point of view and such... but even then it's hard. So... that was bittersweet.

Then w/ my sister, she was busy w/ work and her life, friends, family and such.... and the days passed so quickly. So I found myself getting aggravated w/ her for not giving more time to our time there, but life has a funny way of pulling you away from things, doesn't it?!! I'm glad she stays busy and has such a social life... me, I'm much different. I guess in some ways I felt jealousy in that I wished I was more like her at times. She'll die when she reads this... but it's true.

anyway... all in all, I'm doing better than I was before I left Bahrain and I'm happy for that. Hubby is telling me to come - he's ready to go home... so I'll wrap this post up here... just wanted to let you guys know how I'm doing... my emotions are better... :)

Friday, March 14, 2008

back and rested

We've been back for a couple of weeks now and finally starting to feel like I'm back in the game. Feel rested and happy... which is always a good thing.

Traveling w/ Naief went well - a lot better than I expected. Had heard a lot of horror stories about traveling w/ children, but didn't experience any of that w/ him. The only probs we had were when we spent the night in London. He couldn't fall asleep for anything and cried most of the night away, but slept well on the flight, so it all worked out okay. Getting him back on the time here was a bit difficult, but he's finally settled in and all is well.

The one big issue when we got home was that the woman we have working for us didn't pay attention to the cats and one of my favorite kitties got out and is gone. I was heart broken for days. When I told her, she blamed Hashim's friend who had been house sitting for us. I don't know who did it, but I think it was probably her, since she's very absent-minded and doesn't pay attention to much that's going on around her. I've been calling Porsche and looking out for her, but still nothing. She was such a sweet girl and I wonder if she's still alive.... because.....

I guess about five months ago, our cat, Wilson, got out thru an open window that the woman left open and didn't come back. I called out to him and nothing. I think I may have even blogged about it... because I think the day he got out, I heard the wild dogs that night and thought that maybe he had been killed and figured I'd never see him again.

Well... the night we came home from the airport, I saw a cat that looked just like Wilson cross the street in front of me and, at that time, I thought it might be Wilson, but then figured it was the outside cat that I take care of that looks just like Wilson, but is called Tigger. Once we got inside the house, I realized that Tigger was inside our house! so it couldn't have been him... but I let go of it and didn't think about it again until a few nights ago.

I was standing at our bedroom window and saw a cat - looking just like Wilson - run up a tree when the neighbors came out of their house. After they left, I called his name and he turned around and looked at me. It was then that I saw the white rings around his eyes and knew it was Wilson. I called his name again and heard him cry back to me... and to hear Wilson cry, well, there is no mistaking him for another because it's such a pathetic little cry! :)

I told Hashim that it was Wilson and went down to the street and over to the neighbors immediately. I walked the front of their house calling to him, but nothing. Then... as I was turning the corner, Hashim said, "look there", and low and behold, it was him crouched down in the middle of the street. I said his name again and he cried and came over to me. I slowly bent down and stroked him... thinking that maybe he'd run since it had been sooooo long... but he didn't. He cried and cried, so I picked him up.

Now... he's back in our cat family and everything is the same as it was before... altho he's much thinner now. It took a day of keeping him in another room for him to calm down a bit, and after letting him out w/ the rest of the cats and fearing that there would be some major cat fights, I'm happy to report that there were none and they've welcomed him home.

It's weird because I didn't take Wilson as a survivor. He was shy and a wimp. I would have never thought he would have been able to go up against the wild cats outside, let alone survive on the streets w/ cars.... something he wasn't used to. But he did!! He has a few scars on his ears, is super thin, but I'm really thrilled to have him home.

This fact helps me to have hope for Porsche. I hope that I see her again and that she makes her way back to our neighborhood and home.

other than this.... the house was a complete and utter mess when we came home. I don't think she had cleaned for weeks - or it smelled that way. She's been cleaning like a mad woman since we came home and since hubby threatened w/ sending her back.... I hope it stays this way.


And for missing my family... I do, but I know it won't be long before I see them again. I'm hoping that my sister and mom come for a visit this year of next.... they say they will, but I've heard that before! ;)

I had such a good time in California. I love being there. I love the ocean, the trees, the mountains, the fresh air, the clouds, the rain (altho it rained too much for my blood this time), and I love being around my mom and sister. Naief had such a good time with Katelyn and I miss that every time I look at a picture, but the next time he'll be bigger and will be able to play more, which will make her happier because she won't have to fear that he'll tear up her toys! ;) Even though he didn't break one thing!

anyway... we're going to the Spring Culture event tonight and I'm so looking forward to it. We're taking my husband's mother for her birthday and I hope she likes it as much as I'm sure I will.

Good day all....