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May, 2009:

Where am I?

Where am I? I’m more than a little confused. Yesterday we had a nice sunny braai. Now, after a big breakfast with (hey, it’s sunday) eggs and lots of fruit (passion of course) I’m now sitting on a veranda overlooking a beautiful garden while Hein is mowing the lawn. There are lots of birds to be heard. Tarek hardly needs to wear a thing and we put a fair amount of sunscreen lotion on him. Feels just like home. And it is, in a way. It’s the home of Wil and Fred. The braai yesterday was in Wekerom, in the garden of Heins’ cousin Jeroen. Now we are in Paterswolde and the weather is great. We’ve only been inside to sleep really. Getting here was quite a journey but Tarek hardly noticed the first 8000 km. He probably slept better than anyone else in the plane, having a proper bed. All the new impressions yesterday may have gotten to him though. In the car from Wekerom to Paterswolde he cried from Deventer to Ommen and slept like a log after we arrived here. I just hope he’ll adjust to Dutch time though. This morning he woke up at the not too unusual hour of 6:15 in the morning, except in this country that means 5:15.

To do list

  • Sorting out the clothes to take for Tarek so we don’t carry stuff he’ll grow out off before the end of June. Check.
  • Teaching Tarek to fall asleep by himself. Check.
  • Txt-ing Dani to ask if we should bring her hard disk.
  • Showing Cecilia how the washing machine works so she doesn’t have to wash the curtains by hand when she returns from Arusha. Check.
  • Emptying the fridge and freezer. Check (where it concerns yummy things like chocolate).
  • Getting a new set of glasses. Check.
  • Have them readjust the glasses as they hurt my ears kidogo (a little).
  • Arranging meetings with girlfriends, cousins, parents and parents of friends. Check.
  • Letting people know we’re coming. Check.
  • Ask Erik to clean the high windows on the day we return.
  • Walking through the garden with Alfonsi so he knows what he can do while we’re gone. Check.
  • Send happy birthday txt messages to Nelly and Mari. Check.
  • Trying to fit cot and big bag into suitcase.
  • Buying some presents. Check. (It’s a shame that there wasn’t an arts and craft market like last year right before we left.)
  • Making some back ups of files on computer. Check.
  • Sorting out forms and contract for work permit. Check.
  • See if they put my bio up on the schools’ website. Double check.
  • Stop freezing breast milk as we’ll have to throw most of the expressed milk away anyway. Check.
  • Making sure I go the gym at least one time this week. Check.
  • Indulging myself in the affordable treats Dar has to offer, massage, beauty salon, hair dresser. Getting there. Only massage and haircut left. It’s a tough life but I might manage to do it all before we go.

Party time

In the afternoon we threw a small party in honour of Mayas new job and our anticipated home leave to the good old Netherlands coming Friday. Return to the world of order and predictability, back to civilization. It turned out we have many friends with kids, at prime time there must have been 9 of them. I knew already that I was about to enter this condition but only realized it fully this afternoon. We had enough toys, a lovely garden and plastic swimming pool which was kindly given to us by our neighbour Olaf, a big children fanatic. After a lot of coffee, sandwiches, humus, juice and croissants we ended up with chilled white whine, which according to Marjan is a good thing to drink in the afternoon. Naturally, I agree. At 16:00 everybody had gone home leaving a bit of manageable chaos. Take away pizza at Saverio’s.
party outside

party inside

Check the news page!

Finally, for the first time since Tarek was born we’ve good reasons to update the news page – hip hip Hurray!
The weekend was great, as lazy as we hoped. I’d love to write a little more about it, and I probably will, but not now. The umeme just died and rather than typing like a maniac hoping to beat the back up battery, I will look through the various forms I have to fill in. If you’d read the news page you’d probably understand what paper work I mean.

Have a nice weekend

Reunited and it feels so good! So good that were going to celebrate in style: we’re off to the Lazy Lagoon. A resort on a private island off the coast by Bagamoyo. Light to heavy showers in Amsterdam the BBC tells me. We mustn’t forget sunscreen lotion.