The Nomad Mum's Diary

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Ramdan Diary3: Qameriddin (lit. Moon of faith), king of drinks!

One of the toughest aspects of the fast of Ramadan is surviving for a whole day without water, especially in a hot climate. It is not an easy feat, this is why beverages are an essential part of Iftaar (the sunset meal). For several years now, ads for Coke and Tang have been trying hard to make their products appear as part of the Ramadan traditions, but they are not. Some people may consume them out of convenience, habit or simply because they are cheaper, but the vast majority opts for the... Sign in to see full entry.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Adam's first day at school

Yesterday was Adam's first day at kindergarten. I was one of the lucky parents whose kid did not cry, my son is very sociable and he likes the staff particularly "Faduh" Baseel, the priest/principle of the daycare. I had just stepped into the elevator of our building when Father Baseel called to say that Adam refuses to go to the toilet without his mum. The kindergarten is on the other side of town and I had to rush back to sort out the WC problem. With a small car for a bribe, we managed to get... Sign in to see full entry.

Friday, September 14, 2007

The Ramadan Diary 2- Fasting forward

"Lord, it is for you that I fast, and on the food you provided me I feast. Gone is the thirst, and the veins are moist. May our reward be affirmed". These are the words that conclude the day's fast for a Muslim, said before the first food is consumed. We have just finished the second day of fasting and I am finding it easier than ever, even though the days are longer than they were last year. Despite fasting for 14 to 16 hours daily with all the chores that come with having a home and family... Sign in to see full entry.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

The Ramadan Diary I- Moon struck

It’s official: Ramadan starts tomorrow. Like the majority of Islamic countries, Syria follows the traditional approach in determining when the month of Ramadan begins and ends: by spotting the new moon in the sky. In the days of satellites and radio telescopes it may sound a bit primitive (Tunisia, for example, has long used astronomical charts to verify the beginning and end of lunar months), but I guess that the anticipation is part of the Ramadan tradition and it would not be the same if we... Sign in to see full entry.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Ramadan Charm

FactorFiction left me a comment inquiring whether I was being sarcastic when I wrote that I was looking forward to the fast of Ramadan. I wasn’t! I realize that it is hard to see the appeal of fasting from dawn to dusk for thirty consecutive days, certainly many Muslims don’t look forward to it especially if they have to observe the fast in a non-Muslim country. Still it is not as punishing as it sounds; the sick, women who are pregnant, breast feeding or in their monthly period, and those who... Sign in to see full entry.

Friday, September 7, 2007

A question of faith.

Hot climates make you feel sticky, not just because of the sweat but also because they seem to drag you down, the sensation being of wading through a pool of molasses. For the past week I have been taking Adam to his new preschool where they have an “orientation week”: the children, parents and teachers spend two hours every day together at the newly founded kindergarten so that by the time school starts in one week things would run smoothly. Adam is enjoying himself immensely, so hopefully I... Sign in to see full entry.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Home at last!

I can't believe it's been 12 days since my last entry, time really flies. My last few days in Poland were spent in hectic last-minute shopping, frantic packing and repacking as I discovered that my initial estimate of my belonging was far from correct. We returned home via Istanbul with a 7 hours stop at Ataturk Airport. I had originally planned to go for a stroll in the city, but I got cold feet at the last minute. Adam was more than ready to give me a hard time and traffic jams are a way of... Sign in to see full entry.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Agonizing Zoo

Tuesday was a national holiday, Polish Army Day, it was warm and sunny, the ideal weather for an outing. The plan was to go the zoo first and then head to the Old Town, I should’ve known better, by the time we had left the zoo we were all exhausted and were desperate to get back home. The beautiful weather which got us excited in the first place was in fact a curse. I had not recuperated fully from the flu and the heat did not help. I was also not prepared for the distances we had to walk to and... Sign in to see full entry.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Oops...I did it again!

Despite all my best intentions, my plans to update my blog daily have gone with the wind. I had a bad bout of flu that left me unable to raise my head off the pillow. I would have loved to stay in bed for 3 or 4 days, but with a toddler in tow it was impossible: I had to venture out, dizzy spells and all, and was grateful that we would return home with no major incidents to report. With only 9 days to go it has dawned on me that we have little time left to do any sightseeing: we have still not... Sign in to see full entry.

Monday, August 6, 2007

The Mermaid Story

This is a picture of the Syrenka Warszawska, the Warsaw mermaid. The mermaid has been the symbol of the city of Warsaw for centuries. Few can explain the origin of this symbol; some say that a mermaid was caught in the nets of fishermen on the Vistula river. Another legend says that a Griffin used to guard the city of Warsaw, on a fishing trip in the Baltic he caught a beautiful mermaid. The two fell in love and returned together to Warsaw. When the Swedish army attacked the city the Griffin was... Sign in to see full entry.

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